DISHEARTENING and atrocious is what we would describe the act by a registered midwife at the Suhum Government Hospital for slapping a pregnant woman in labour.
WITH all the plights that women suffer during the period of pregnancy, the least we had expected from a registered nurse with a sworn duty to pregnant women and patients, especially women in labour, was to embrace them with open arms to find some comfort during their pains and moments of groaning which is associated with childbirth.
A health worker, as part of his/her core duties, is not only to treat patients while on admission, but provide assistance and care. But, Today, in fact was gravely taken aback when news broke that a nurse had no option than to slap the pregnant woman over what she described as ‘needless noise’ she was making at the labour ward.
THE pregnant woman was reportedly bleeding profusely and in pain, which necessitated her wailing, but the nurse didn’t take kindly to that and resorted to slapping the pregnant woman to shut her up as she was ‘disturbing’ the entire hospital.
QUESTIONS that we seek to ask is whether groaning by a bleeding pregnant woman constitutes an aggravated noise that warrants a slap by a registered nurse? We would also want to seek clarity from the Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwifery Council (GRNMC) whether slapping pregnant women in labour was a normal practice in their profession?
IF all the above questions answer negative, then we would like to appeal to the regulatory bodies including GRNMC, the Ministry of Health and authorities at the Suhum Government Hospital to initiate immediate measures to investigate the circumstance that led to this vile act by the nurse.
APPROPRIATE sanctions commensurate with such ghastly acts after the investigations should be meted out to the nurse in the shortest possible time to deter others that might be engaging in similar acts at the various government hospitals.
WE would like to also sound a word of caution to the family of the pregnant woman to restrain themselves from engaging in acts that might break the law. Inasmuch as we share in their unhappiness over the incident, it is also prudent for them to recognise that fact that the country is governed by laws that should be adhered to by any citizen no matter the circumstance.