Nursing Now Uganda was launched on 22 March as part of the 3rd UK-East African Healthcare Summit, which took place in Kampala, Uganda. Our Co-Chair, Lord Nigel Crisp, gave the Summit’s keynote address. More than 100 nurses from Uganda and neighbouring countries, many in uniform, joined the conference audience for the launch.
Lord Crisp and Dr Catherine Hannaway from Nursing Now’s central team started the afternoon launch session with an overview of the global campaign. Dr Hannaway set the tone for the session by describing her own experiences of nursing and asking if the nurses and others in the room were ready for the challenge. “We are,” she was told, “we are ready”.
Dr. Rose Nanyonga, Vice Chancellor of the International Health Sciences University went on to outline the road map for Nursing Now Uganda. She spoke passionately about the many difficulties that nurses and midwives faced in Uganda from overwork to poor support to inadequate equipment.
Dr Nanyonga went on to describe how these challenges could only be resolved with a new approach and a fresh set of policies. The road map for improvement focuses on education, regulation, policy and improved practice. She said it would require nurses everywhere to lead changes but would also require support from Government and other agencies. The road map aims to enable nurses and midwives to succeed everywhere from the bedside through to the board room.
A highlight of the launch came at the end of the session, when the Ugandan nurses stood and sang the nurses’ anthem.