"Iraq: Neglected nurses fight their own war"

  1. from: the center for nursing advocacy

    "iraq: neglected nurses fight their own war"

    november 19, 2006 -- today the irin news service (an affiliate of reuters ) posted a good piece about the severe hardship iraqi nurses face. the unsigned article focuses on the struggle of nurse nissrin muhammad to care for patients--150 or more at a time--at a public hospital in baghdad.

    the widowed mother of five works six days a week, 13 hours a day, enduring physical and verbal abuse in desperate conditions. she can no longer afford meat, but she no longer wants to eat it anyway; it reminds her too much of the relentless carnage she sees as a result of sectarian violence. the piece says many iraqi nurses have fled the nation. those with working husbands stay home to avoid the violence.

    there are good quotes from a ministry of health physician, who stresses that physicians cannot function without the nurses, and that "losing their work means losing lives." the piece might have provided more information on iraqi nursing generally, both before and after the war. but overall it's a powerful look at a profession in crisis. more...

    iraq is suffering a dearth of nurses. those who could afford to have already fled to neighbouring countries. those with working husbands stay at home, afraid of the escalating violence. but the rest must soldier on in their fight against fear and poverty.


    "they are our main support. without their work, doctors cannot do their job because nurses are the ones who maintain the lives of patients after the medical diagnosis. losing their work means losing lives," said dr yehia al-mawin, senior official at the ministry of health's strategy department. he added that women represent 80 percent of all nurses.


    more than 160 nurses have been murdered since the us-led invasion of iraq in 2003 and more than 400 wounded, according to al-mawin. in addition, he said thousands had fled the country or were forced to leave their work after receiving threats from insurgents and militia fighters.
    pretty powerful words. karen



    check out the center's : news on nursing in the media
    www.nursingadvocacy.org/news_alerts/2007/jan/06.html
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Jan 7, '07
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   SmilingBluEyes
    WOW. Just wow.
  4. by   pickledpepperRN
    Thank you, Karen.

    I don't know enough to say much but I'm sure all of us want to know how we can help those nurses and their patients.
  5. by   allantiques4me
    How sad, the times we live in.
  6. by   burn out
    My heart goes out to anyone that has to live in a war zone and try to return to a degree of normalcy..I don't know how anyone could live in those conditions and I pray I never have to. If I could figure out a way to help those nurses ...then I should be president.
  7. by   subee
    Quote from burn out
    My heart goes out to anyone that has to live in a war zone and try to return to a degree of normalcy..I don't know how anyone could live in those conditions and I pray I never have to. If I could figure out a way to help those nurses ...then I should be president.
    Is there anyone out there, military or civilian, that could help us communicate with nurses in Iraq? Anyone out there a member of the International Nurses Society who could help set up a network of support. I am unable to imagine the living conditions in the areas plagued with violence, but believe that this civil war was inevitable - even without American interference. A small armed minority cannot subjugate 80 % of the population forever. Surely there is a way for the members of Allnurses to extend support to the nurses of Iraq.
  8. by   MUNewgrad
    Quote from spacenurse
    Thank you, Karen.

    I don't know enough to say much but I'm sure all of us want to know how we can help those nurses and their patients.
    I belong to a school chapter of the NSNA and we have expressed an interest in helping nurses in Iraq.
    How would I go about that?

    Melissa Johns
  9. by   teeituptom
    This is just another way of saying it is time to end this and bring our troops home

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