The University of the Philippines Open University’s Faculty of Management and Development Studies (FMDS), Master of Arts in Nursing (MAN) program in collaboration with the Association of Nursing Service Administrators of the Philippines Inc. (ANSAP) conducted Let’s Talk it Over (LTiO) webinar titled “Nursing Service Preparedness amidst the Pandemic” on 22 July 2020 via the UPOU Networks.

The webinar was moderated by Ms. Maria Rita V. Tamse and Asst. Professor Rita C. Ramos. In their introductory remarks, they said that ANSAP and MAN Program have been disseminating information regarding the current situation and this webinar tackled the experiences of the speakers with regards to the management, coping mechanism, and preparedness during this time of pandemic.

The first speaker, Dr. Rodolfo C. Borromeo is the current president of ANSAP and the Chief Nursing Officer of the Manila Doctors Hospital. He presented their hospital’s preparedness framework. Aside from adapting different effective practice models from other countries, their preparedness framework was collaboratively done by the senior management team. The framework includes general conditions, human resource management, supplies, infrastructure, support systems and new normal integration. Dr. Borromeo also showed how their hospital does active training and education which is collaboratively done by doctors and nurses. He ended his presentation by emphasizing that resiliency and teamwork are what really allowed them to pull everything together.

Ms. Maria Cecilia E. Punzalan, OIC of the Division of Nursing Education and Training of the Philippine General Hospital (PGH), was the second speaker. She shared the best practices being done by the PGH such as pro-active support in the management directives and initiatives and introducing innovations, including  the use of e-documentation which helped not just the nurses but also other staff, and also  of infographics for announcements and protocols for better mass communication. Ms. Punzalan emphasized the provision of psychological support for their nursing personnel. She advised that we also need to look at the learnings amidst these challenges.

The third speaker, Mr. Harby Abellanosa, is a Nurse VII in Cebu South Medical Center and the current Vice President of Visayas DOH Chief Nurses Association. Mr. Abellanosa discussed the Cebu South Medical Center’s initiatives in response to COVID-19. According to him, there are four strategies and good practices in their nursing service and these are quick assembly of nursing staff, workflow optimization, focused group training, and organized internal support. He shared that they enrolled in a free online course as a training for COVID-19.

The last speaker, Ms. Elvie Baura is the Chief Nurse of Lung Center of the Philippines. Ms. Baura showed a video presentation on their response and surge plan during this pandemic. She shared that they set two main goals in response to this pandemic, first is to ensure personnel safety and second is to provide optimal patient care. She ended with a quote saying that nothing lasts forever, not even the coronavirus.

The webinar had a thousand viewers from different locations. The MAN program is looking forward to more webinars during this pandemic to address the different concerns on health through sharing of experiences as well as to provide information and knowledge in these challenging times.