The virtual Nightingale Challenge workshop for 283 selected young nurses and midwives which was held via zoom has successfully ended. 

The Nursing and Midwifery Council in partnership with the University of Ghana Medical Centre, Mental Health Authority, Teaching Hospitals, Ghana Health Service, Police Hospital, 37 Military Hospital, Ghana College of Nurses & Midwives and School of Nursing & Midwifery, University of Ghana, Legon organized the four-day sessional programme in two weeks.

Participants were involved in leadership and mentoring programmes, covering cross-cutting topics and emerging issues of Nursing and Midwifery leadership. 

Though the workshop was targeted at the 67 selected participants, the workshop saw other organizations and individual members of the nursing and midwifery fraternity including the Legon Hospital and the North America Ghana Nurses Foundation (NAGNF) in the USA, joining the virtual workshop bringing the total number to 283 participants.

Speaking at the closing ceremony held on Saturday, the Registrar of the Council, Mr. Felix Nyante entreated participants not to neglect the knowledge, understanding, insight and leadership skills they have acquired but apply them in all settings of their profession. Mr. Nyante thanked the partnering organizations and facilitators for their invaluable contributions and presentations.

He also encouraged participants to embrace and utilize Information Communication Technology (ICT) in the provision of healthcare as that was a necessity in modern day nursing and midwifery. He said the Council is driving an ICT transformation agenda and will soon digitize all of its services to Clients and Stakeholders.

“We have digitized our indexing, registration, results checking, PIN/AIN cards and would soon introduce the renewal of license online. All these services are accessible on the Council’s website and a newly created app called NMC Mobile.”

According to him, Ghana stands as the first country in Africa to have developed and implemented online licensing examination for nursing and midwifery trainees.  All these digitized platforms wouldn’t have been possible without the support of the Netherlands Embassy through its Capacity Development in Higher Education Programme Initiative (NICHE) and the Netherlands Universities Foundation for International Cooperation (NUFFIC).

The Council is implementing the NICHE project in partnership with a consortium comprising of CINOP Global & Advisory Services and Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology.

Speaking on behalf of the North American Ghana Nurses Foundation (NAGNF) from the USA, Mrs. Matilda Adams, Chapter President, NAGNF Northeast said she was confident that Nurses and Midwives in Ghana and abroad will lead the way in expanding and diversifying the healthcare system.

She stressed that “strong leadership is critical if the vision of a transformed health care system is to be realized. The nursing and midwifery profession must produce leaders throughout the health care system, from the bedside to the boardroom, who can serve and be accountable for their own contributions to delivering high-quality care while working collaboratively with leaders from other health professions”

 In her closing address, Rev. Veronica Darko, Chairperson of the 14th Governing Board of the Council noted that Nursing and Midwifery research and practice must continue to identify and develop evidence-based improvements to care, and these improvements must be tested and adopted through policy changes across the health care system.

She urged the participants to translate new research findings into the practice environment and into nursing education and from nursing education into practice and policy.  Rev. Darko emphasized that Improved regulatory systems, policies, attitudes, and habits can increase the innovations the nursing and midwifery profession could bring to health care at a time of tremendous complexity and change such as managing Covid-19.

“It is my estimation that at the end of the Nightingale Challenge in December 2020, participants will be well equipped with leadership skills and can excel in the education, bedside, administrative, regulatory and policymaking sectors in the country and abroad” she said.