University of Delaware Nurses on Eastern Cape Tour visit Areena

Posted on: March 4, 2019, in News, Uncategorized

We were very fortunate to host a group of Nursing Students from the University of Delaware in January 2019. They come to the Eastern Cape to assist with the improvement of maternal health services and feminine education. Below is an article that featured in the Daily Dispatch on the 31 Jan 2019.


US, Fort Hare nurses collaborate

BONDED: University of Delaware nursing students with Professor Lisa McBeth and Frere Hospital CEO Dr Rolene Wagner.

The University of Fort Hare’s health sciences faculty is partnering with the nursing department at the University of Delaware in the USA to improve maternal health services in the Eastern Cape.

The collaboration is set to see students from both universities spending time in academic hospitals to share skills and exchange clinical and academic knowledge.

Students and facilitators from the US university have been in the Eastern Cape since Thursday, when they launched the Banda Pad initiative in Gcina village in Mazeppa Bay.

They arrived in the city on Monday, and have been on rotational visits to the Frere and Cecilia Makiwane maternity wards.

On Wednesday the group of 33 was working in the Frere maternity ward and the neonatal ICU.

Fort Hare international relations morbidity programmes coordinator Xolelwa ScottGeorge said the collaboration would be formalised by memorandums of understanding between the two universities. She said the partnership was a first for the university, which has existing relations with other international institutions.

“We will have more students from Delaware coming here to learn from us, and we will also send ours there. The collaboration between the health faculties will meet the needs of all students by balancing academics with clinical experience.”

Delaware school of nursing’s professor Lisa McBeth said the collaboration will see students exchange experiences in clinical settings.

McBeth said the university would bring their birthing programmes to rural parts of the province to educate women and families in rural settings on the do’s and don’t’s of the birthing process, antenatal care and the use of contraceptives.

She said this help would fight some causes of maternal deaths, such as haemorrhaging.

The Dispatch reported in October that health MEC Helen Sauls-August had said deaths of pregnant women during and within 40 days of giving birth decreased from 135 for every 100,000 live births in 2016-17 to 128 in 2017-18.

Frere CEO Dr Rolene Wagner said the hospital still saw a significant number of stillborns, which she said could be avoided if pregnant moms acted on the symptoms they experienced.

The university’s visit comes as an East London woman, who gave birth prematurely, accused the hospital of negligence after she miscarried at 24 weeks.

The woman said she gave birth on Saturday without any assistance from nurses after none of them came to her rescue when she cried for help. Wagner said the pregnancy was classified as unviable.

“Two of the doctors on duty explained the diagnosis, the likely outcome, to her.”

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