The Faculty of Management and Development Studies (FMDS) and the Master of Arts in Nursing (MAN) Program organized the Let’s Talk It Over webinar titled “Who Takes Care of the Caregivers? The COVID-19 Experience” on 11 June 2020 to take a closer look at the situations of nurses during this pandemic and their experience as COVID-19 patients and survivors.

The COVID-19 Experience

Ms. Angelique Rosete, a gyne-oncology and trophoblastic nurse at the University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital, Mr. John Alex Melencio, a charge nurse in Royal Brompton Hospital, United Kingdom. shared their experiences as nurses who take care of COVID-19 patients and eventually becoming COVID-19 patients themselves. They narrated the level of anxiety they experienced when they learned that they are COVID-19 positive, as well as their daily  psychological, emotional, and physical struggles. They also told  the systems and assistive programs put in place by their respective hospitals that helped them to do their jobs more efficiently and safely.

The Covid 19 Global Pandemic: Implications to Nursing Administration

The Implications to Nursing Administration was discussed by Ms. Maria Rita V. Tamse, Senior Lecturer, University of the Philippine Open University and University of the Philippines Manila College of Nursing and a practitioner with 38 years of nursing administration experience. She talked about the impact of COVID-19 to the healthcare system and the tasks of the hospital administration to plan and adjust to a new system with limited resources and to provide knowledge and education to nurses with appropriate interventions to the patients. She also emphasized that people need to share fact-based information to be able to fight this pandemic.

The impact of the pandemic on nursing is quite evident as revealed on the following factors: availability of resources, human resource alignment and sound staffing plan, restructuring of services, segregation of patients from COVID to Non-COVID cases, drafting of policies, guidelines, and protocol, revisions in models of care to make it responsive and aligned with the new health protocols, and meeting the high demand for psychological support for patients and healthcare workers.

The global pandemic put to fore the critical role of nurses in preparing the healthcare services to manage and mitigate the effect of COVID-19. The webinar has highlighted the need to effectively coordinate interdisciplinary care, mitigate and lessen complications, provide safe care, and manage the psychosocial care of patients.

The pandemic is far from over, as our country and the whole world are still grappling to overcome and manage the havoc brought about by the pandemic. Ms. Tamse also said that nurse leaders should outline the critical points for policy directions that are imperatives at this time and beyond the pandemic.

The webinar shed light on the opportunity for nurses to play a prominent role to start the discussion on redefining many aspects of health care that may have been problematic and design new ways of delivering effective, efficient and safe health care beyond this pandemic.