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Role of nurses.
The pandemic due to coronavirus started from the city of Wuhan, China in the year 2019. The virus which caused this outbreak spread in the entire world in just within the time period of a few months. It started in December of 2019 and from then, it has become a major challenge for the health of the public and communities. In January 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the outbreak as a public health emergency which holds international concerns (Meng, Hua & Bian, 2020; Ing, Xu, Salimi & Torun, 2020; Gómez-Ochoa et al., 2020). The number of reported cases in the world about the infection has been 33,842,281 and out of that 1,010,634 people have died. There are 285,764 people who have currently contracted the infection (World Health Organization, 2020). Thus, it is crucial to educate the patients, clients and communities about the control of the infection in the times of COVID-19. Nurses can play an important role in educating as they are the frontline workers who are in contact with the people of communities and the diseased individuals, therefore; they can help with the infection control. So, in the report, the issue will be discussed briefly with the critical evaluation of the evidence that is present on the topic. In addition to this, recommendations would be made so that infection could be prevented.
The coronavirus outbreak was first reported in China and from there it has spread in other parts of the world. For example Asia, Europe, North America, the Middle East and so on. On 30 January 2020, it was announced by the WHO that the outbreak is of international concern which now has turned into a pandemic. Very common signs and symptoms of the infection in patients of COVID-19 are cough and fever which is generally followed by shortness of breath, muscle pain, headache, diarrhoea, fatigue, dyspnea, hemoptysis. Some patients who develop more severe signs experience sepsis, pulmonary edema, acute respiratory distress, septic shock, severe pneumonia also (Chen, Lai & Tsay, 2020). However, some patients are asymptomatic and this causes transmission of disease from one individual to another in an undetected manner which results in massive spreading of the infection among the people. The virus is transmitted via respiratory droplets which come out of patients’ mouth. It could also spread in the area where there is a high density of people such as malls, public transport and airports. Furthermore, the risk of infection is also very high in hospitals (Chen, Lai & Tsay, 2020; Ramaiah et al., 2020).
Due to the coronavirus crisis, there is a great burden on the healthcare systems on a global scale. There is a need for a lot of resources and manpower to combat the disease. So, for that, the healthcare workers who work in the frontline can help in controlling the disease and the infection. The nurses are one of the members who work in hospitals, nursing homes, communities, healthcare agencies and schools (Chen, Lai & Tsay, 2020). They play multiple roles and have various responsibilities and that’s why they can function to reduce the coronavirus infection. They can successfully provide education about coronavirus to the patients, clients and community member so that COVID-10 infection could get manage. In addition to that, they can also help in screening services and could provide support to the general public and people who come under the high-risk population (Purba, 2020). Moreover, nurses could also help raise the issues that are significant for the health of the people so that vulnerable people voices could be heard. They can safeguard and defend the rights of the people and could help them in decision-making for the benefit of their welfare. Therefore, nurses could perform an important role in educating people in the times of coronavirus pandemic so that less number of people gets the infection. This will ultimately improve the situation of the society and the communities which have got worse because of the pandemic. By educating people they do not only reducing the risk of infection but also prepare them for the future. Thus, their part in infection control is necessary (Purba, 2020).
In the study conducted by Choi, Skrine Jeffers and Cynthia Longsdon, (2020), they stated the role of nurses during the time of novel coronavirus. They mention that nurses are in the centre of response and prevention strategies for COVID-19. With that, the researchers highlighted that the duty of nursing have put them in direct contact to the risk of getting the disease but due to their role they have to perform their responsibilities (Choi, Skrine Jeffers & Cynthia Longsdon, 2020). Nurses are one of the trusted members of the healthcare community so they have a key duty in giving public education about the coronavirus. By doing this, they will prevent the public from getting the disease and also help diseased individuals to take steps for better management of their condition so that no more people get contracted through them. Nurses could also disregard all the misinformation about the disease and thus inhibit the spreading of false or incorrect news about the coronavirus (Choi, Skrine Jeffers & Cynthia Longsdon, 2020). They could also direct communities to gain information about the pandemic via relevant and authentic sources such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Therefore, by doing this nurses would promote evidence-based prevention practices and strategies among the patients, clients and community members. Therefore, it can be said nurse can help with patient and public education and can stop the spreading of misinformation by directing them towards the evidence-based information which is actually true (Choi, Skrine Jeffers & Cynthia Longsdon, 2020; Wu et al., 2020).
In the study performed by Chen, Lai & Tsay, (2020), they have discussed the roles and responsibilities of the nurses during coronavirus. They stated that nurses have to provide education to people and support their needs. They also have to take care of precautions and preparations in the healthcare settings so that they can facilitate in controlling the infection. They have the duty to protect people who have an underlying chronic condition such as heart diseases or cancers. In addition to that, they have to provide the utmost quality care to the patient who is in critical condition due to infection of coronavirus (Chen, Lai & Tsay, 2020). Thus, they have multiple responsibilities. But the first step in protecting the people from COVID-19 is to inform and educate them. Nurses could do this by imparting knowledge about infection prevention strategies. For example maintaining hygiene, washing hands, cancelling group or community activity and avoiding touching eyes, mouth and nose. Nurses could also inform people about early signs and symptoms so that they could get themselves checked in order to limit the transmission of coronavirus. They can also emphasis on the usage of protective equipment such as masks, gloves and so on. With that, they can train and educate the patient, their families and other healthcare staff on the ways by which infection could be prevented (Chen, Lai & Tsay, 2020).
In the study conducted by Choi and Kim, (2016), they have mentioned about prevention of crisis and control of infection by nurses during the outbreak of coronavirus in Korea. They have addressed the role of the nurse in isolating the patients and various other activities such as screening of people, disinfecting the medical facility for individuals, collection of specimen, admission and discharge of the diseased individuals. With that, they have emphasized on educating patient and other staff members about the usage of personal protective equipment and N95 masks as they reduce the risk of infection and transmission of coronavirus disease (Choi & Kim, 2016). Nurses could also pay attention to the knowledge of donning and doffing of safety equipment in the hospital and in the community. Therefore, by doing this, nurses would provide education to patients, clients and customers about the proper use of safety gears. They will also let them know the proper way of discarding them so that other person does not get the infection of coronavirus from the used equipment. This would ultimately lead to infection control during the coronavirus pandemic (Choi & Kim, 2016).
Educating patient, client and customers by nurses is the process of imparting the knowledge about illness or diseases so that health status could be improved and decision-making could become mutual while taking care of the patient. This process is necessary so that techniques and strategies could be put into place to lower the risk of diseases among the people of society. Education by nurses helps in providing skills and information about healthy lifestyle and preventive services. It also facilitates in giving the knowledge about correct medication and type of care services (Fereidouni et al., 2019). With that, educating patient and other people would help in understand and better management of the disease so that behaviour which is health-promoting could be encouraged. Therefore, nurses could provide education by first supervising the already existing information that people and patient have and by giving them constructive feedback. They could furthermore train novice personnel so that correct information could be imparted among people (Fereidouni et al., 2019; Lasa-Blandon et al., 2019).
In addition to that, nurses could tell people about the need for surveillance if they show any signs or symptoms so that early detection could be made. They can emphasis that contagious individuals should be given proper care and should be kept in isolation so that the disease is not transmitted to any other person (Rebmann & Carrico, 2017). The nurses could also educate people about standard precautions so that coronavirus did not transmit. They can impart the information about the usage of protective gears and equipment that could help in stopping the infection. They can further highlight the importance of hygiene and especially hand hygiene and washing of hands with water and soap or using alcohol-based sanitizer (Rebmann & Carrico, 2017; Leigh et al., 2020).
Nurses could also educate the patient and other members of the community by promoting the testing in healthcare units in a routine manner. They can also inform patient weather their admitting to the hospital is necessary or they need to remain in the homes is required. They can educate the person on call also so that preventive measures could take place. Nurses could also take care of hand hygiene of people in the hospital facility and thus can lay focus on the importance of washing hands. They could impart the knowledge about cough etiquette and respiratory hygiene. They can highlight the importance of wearing a facemask. With that, nurses could also promote physical distancing so that coronavirus transmission could be limited. The nurse could also tell people to do not use the same utensils, sheets and other products while at home. They could also lay the importance that surrounding f the people is disinfected and clean. Therefore, the nurse could promote education in patients and other individuals about the coronavirus infection and ways by which it can be controlled (Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020).
In conclusion, it could be said that coronavirus is a deadly virus which has caused millions of death around the world and even now the transmission is going on. It has been originated from China but has impacted every part of the world. It causes various symptoms in people such as fever, cough and so on and sometimes people also found to be asymptomatic. The virus is spread through coming in contact with air droplets from the infected individual's mouth. Therefore, to combat these diseases and to stop its transmission nurses could step in. they are frontline workers and thus could create awareness in people about the infection and its transmission by imparting education to them. They can do this by telling people to keep their personal hygiene and to wash them properly. They can emphasis on wearing masks and other protective gears. With that, nurses can tell the patients and people about the signs and symptoms of coronavirus so that they monitor their status. They can also promote eliminating the false or misinformation by reading about the disease from authentic sources such as WHO and CDC.
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