The Chairperson for the Principals of Health Training Institutions in Uganda has advised nursing and midwifery students in their final year of study to apply for practising licenses immediately after graduation to avoid complaints of delays.
Rose Nassali notes that the registration process was made easier since it can be done online. But the challenge is that many graduates wait until when they want to upgrade or get job opportunities and then rush for registration.
Nassali was speaking at the closure of a three-day annual general assembly-AGM for Uganda National Association of Student Nurses and Midwives-UNASNM leaders held at St. Francis School of Health Science, Namataba in Mukono. She represented Dr Safina Musene, the Commissioner for Health Training Institutions at the Ministry of Education and Sports.
Students, especially those upgrading their studies, raised the challenge of delayed issuance of licenses by the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Council during the general assembly.
Sanon Lubaale, who has been the UNASNM president, in his report noted that delayed issuance of licenses is now the major challenge affecting graduates seeking employment opportunities and other major academic upgrades. He explained that such a situation discourages student nurses and also contributes to poor performance among others whenever they think about life after school.
The assembly brings together student leaders from all the nursing and midwifery schools in the country to discuss students matters besides electing the new leadership. Among other issues that are still challenging student nurses are poor meals, fewer or delayed facilitations for intern nurses, and a prolonged period of practice for certificates seeking to upgrade to the diploma.
Meanwhile, UNASNM elected new leaders with Moses Baguma from Mbarara University of Science and Technology becoming the new president after defeating Samuel Ssebugwawo from Kampala University. Other leaders elected are Winnie Kasimire as Vice President, Evelyn Musimenta as Seterary General, Arbans Bariho as Speaker, Trevor Wooki as Deputy Speaker, Rashid Were as Publicity Secretary, and Edwin Adraza who is secretary for Finance.
After swearing in as the new president, Baguma promised to diversify the voice of students, boost academic performance, and lobby for their wellbeing.
Dr Musene who is also the UNASNM patron appreciated the former leadership and asked the new leadership to exhibit a high level of discipline not to be termed as rebel students by the school administration.
She also lauded the administration of St. Francis School of Health Sciences for accepting to host the general assembly as well as providing free accommodation, conference centre, utilities and security.