Continuing education a must in healthcare

National 2 minutes, 55 seconds


HEALTHCARE professionals in the Sultanate yesterday were challenged to further their education to be ready to face the difficult tasks presented by the increasing incidence of non-communicable diseases and reemergence of infectious illnesses.

“Furthering education is not just for our own personal development but even more important for the betterment of Brunei Darussalam’s healthcare industry,” said Permanent Secretary of Health Datin Paduka Dr Dyg Hjh Norlila Dato Paduka Hj Abd Jalil.

Datin Dr Hjh Norlila stressed the importance of improving one’s skills in her speech at the 4th Cardiology Nursing and Allied Health Professional Conference at the Royal Brunei Polo and Riding Club.

“When nurses and healthcare professionals begin their work in hospitals or other health care facilities, it doesn’t mean that their academic pursuits will end,” she stressed.

“Beyond providing high quality services and good care, we are also faced with caring for a population experiencing an increasing incidence of lifestyle related non-communicable diseases (NCDs),” she said.

Brunei has seen a surge in the number of people with diabetes mellitus, hypertension, coronary artery disease, cancers, stroke, overweight and obesity.

However, she also voiced concern on the difficult challenges faced by healthcare givers due to various outbreaks reported worldwide.

“But in this day and age we are also not spared from infectious diseases such as the re-emergence of tuberculosis, SARS, MERS and now, Ebola.”

She said these have made the responsibility of health care services heavier and advise the society to continuously maintain health through a clean environment, healthy lifestyle.

The permanent secretary said the conference’s theme: Advancing towards Excellence in Practice – was fitting.

“It’s most appropriate at this time as we continuously endeavour to make significant changes to the development and delivery of healthcare in Brunei Darussalam,” she said.

“And by continuing our education, it can ensure the delivery of a consistent, quality and safe service, so patients, families and the community are given the highest standard of compassionate care,” she said.

Datin Dr Hjh Norlila said this can contribute to Brunei to become a higher standard of living and quality of life comparable to that of the leading economies of the world.

She reminded that education and knowledge needs to be constantly developed if nurses were to keep abreast of ever-changing technologies and practices.

“The Ministry of Health encourages nurses and healthcare professionals to maintain a high degree of professionalism with a sense of commitment by being compassionate,” she said.

“Especially more so when delivering services, through values such as caring, empathy and respect for human dignity.”

During the conference and picking off from the permanent secretary’s speech, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) representative Armah Tengah delivered her presentation: Education Role in Advancing towards Excellence in Practice. She elaborated on the options available at UBD if they were interested in furthering their education.

She said that the initiative to train female students by School of Nursing and Midwifery training was implemented by a nursing officer from United Nation International Children and Education Fund (UNICEF) in 1951.

Gleneagles JPMC’s organised the to help about 200 nurses carry out their duties better.

The international speakers were Professor Dr Melanie Birks of James Cook University Australia who delivered Challenges and Rewards in Nursing Management and Bernadette Parrot, Yan Wai Leng and Lam Hui Lin; all three from Singapore.

Datin Dr Hjh Norlila then presented tokens of appreciation to the speakers and she also received one herself from Gleneagles JPMC Chief Executive Officer Dr Peter Tay.

The Brunei Times