S’pore student nurses end stint

National 2 minutes, 42 seconds


THE Ministry of Health (MoH) yesterday bid farewell to 10 Student Enrolled Nurses from the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) College East in Singapore, following their completion of the 10-day Clinical Attachments at Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Saleha (RIPAS) Hospital.

The Singaporean students had been hosted by the MoH Department of Nursing Services, as part of the second work plan under the Overseas Nursing Student Exchange Programme (ONSEP).

During their stay, the Enrolled Nurses had the opportunity to have a closer look at the healthcare system available in Brunei.

One of the student nurses, Jaskirath Kaur d/o Balwant Singh told The Brunei Times that the programme was an “eye-opener” for her and her fellow students.

“We understand that the healthcare system here (in Brunei) is a little bit different from that in Singapore - Bruneian nurses are maybe more privileged to do more than those in Singapore, in the sense that staff nurses here do almost everything,” Jaskirath said.

“We also noticed that assistant nurses here can draw blood from patients - we are not privileged to do so in Singapore,” she remarked.

Jaskirath further said that the Singaporean students had been “really amazed” with the subsidised healthcare available in Brunei.

“Healthcare only costs a dollar here, and medicines and (medical) procedures are so heavily subsidised. In Singapore and other countries, you would really have to be able to afford it,” she said.

Meanwhile, another student, Syaryan Ruziani Ahmad Ruzizad, pointed out the differences in culture between the countries.

“Assistant nurses here get to do more stuff, and they are helped by family members.

“In Singapore, hospitals prioritise the patients - we’re quite strict about not allowing family to tend to the patient,” Syaryan explained.

He also said that Singaporean hospitals were strict about adherence to visiting hours.

“Here, (visiting family members) can stay for the whole day,” he said.

Syaryan also shared that he and his fellow students had been selected to participate in the programme by their conduct and Grade Point Average (GPA). They also had to get recommended by their teacher and pass an interview process.

According to a MoH statement, the itinerary for the students also included visits to other government hospitals, health centres and health clinics, as well as visits to Kg Ayer and the Royal Regalia Building in the capital.

Among those present at the Brunei International Airport to send the students off yesterday were Department of Nursing Services officers Hjh Kamariah Hj Abdul Rahman and Noraliah Abullah, trainers from the Nursing Training and Development Centre in Kiarong, as well as RIPAS colleagues.

MoH in its statement said it was hoped that the availability of such clinical placements would further enhance cooperation between Brunei and Singapore, in terms of learning the best nursing practices. It also aims to provide an understanding of the cultural and social developments in Brunei.

It was previously reported that the first ONSEP took place last year, which saw the first cohort of Singaporean Student Enrolled Nurses attached to the medical and surgical wards in RIPAS.

Last year also saw the sending of two assistant nurse trainees and a teaching staff member from MoH to Singapore for a two-week Clinical Attachment Programme at ITE.

The Brunei Times​