Roleof Nurses in a Refugee Center their Challenges and Benefits
Roleof Nurses in a Refugee Center their Challenges and Benefits
Nursesoffer health care services to the assigned people to ensure theirsafety and well- being. Draft, civil wars, and terrorist attacks,among other disasters make people move from their native country insearch of peace, food, and better refuge. Victoria has given a hometo thousands of refugees from African nations like Sudan, Asia likefrom nations like (Afghanistan and Burma) while others come from theMiddle East (Iraq). The refugees depend on donations from well-wishers organizations for food and shelter (Scheppers,2006).Due to harsh living conditions, poor nutrition, traveling, andchanges in weather, mental trauma from their experiences, thesepeople may contact diseases and transmit them among themselves. Therefugees need health care services to protect them, prevent thespread and more damage (Brady,2000).The paper points out some of the duties and responsibilities ofnurses working in a refugee environment. It also includes some of thechallenges the health workers face while dealing with such people andoutlines the possible benefits (Smith,2000).
Themain responsibilities of nurses in a refugee setting includeassessment procedures, primary health care provisions and ensure theenhancement of the community health. The health assessment requiresthe use of MBS tools or other alternative tools from refugees’health agencies (Yankauer,1982).The nurse also creates a mainstream to facilitate coordination withother health specialists like the dentists, nutritionists, andcounselors, to the community to improve the overall health (Smith,2000). The nurses work in partnership with other medicalprofessionals in different fields the refugees and the surroundingcommunity (Leonard,2001).The nurses should interact closely with the settlers so as to build arelationship with then enhancing information sharing. Through this,the nurses get to spot new arrivals and assess their health. Thenurses also offer social support by integrating with the people andcreating a strong connection between them as well as throughorientation programs (Kennedy, 1999).
Thenurses also create an awareness of the families on hygiene mattersand give health education to help them improve their health. Thenurses also do the collection and analyzation of data on refugeehealth to assist in the overall planning of the best service,manpower and equipment needed for efficient health service in thecamp (Kennedy, 1999). In cases where some people are sick in thecamp, the nurses help the community and the family on ways to dealwith the situation and handle the sick (Leonard,2001).For those suffering from mental trauma, the nurses ensure that theyget proper therapy and that the society understands their condition(Scheppers,2006).The nurses in such environment also take up the role of educating therefugees on the health risks that may arise from particular behaviorslike irresponsible sex, rape cases, risks involved in some culturalpractices like women circumcision and lifestyle ("Refugeesand Asylum Seekers", 2016).
Thenurse ensures complete backup services and health tools to cater foremergencies and always avail themselves in the case of any need fortheir services or provide an alternative while unavailable(Hounsgaard, Jensen, Wilche & Dolmer, 2013). A wide range ofskills and knowledge remains a requirement in theses nurses as due tothe shortage of specialists, they make decisions on human health handhandle various health issues. They should possess the capability tohandle the infants, the aged including the youths and the children’shealth problems (Yankauer,1982).
Ontop of that, the nurses bear administrative and management roles inthe overall clinical and health services, education and awareness aswell as environmental and human health factors. Nurses offeringhealth care services in refugee camps and other remote rural areasholds wider responsibilities to the community they serve. Advancedpractice and training would help to equip these nurses to increasetheir capabilities to execute their duties and make proper decisionswhile handling patients (Bradshaw, 2003).
Therefugees require health services since they form a more vulnerablegroup of diseases and trauma conditions. They, therefore, need nursesto offer nursing services (Kennedy,1999).However, the nurses face a lot of challenges while serving therefugees. Most refugee camps are located in remote areas, mostly inislands, deserts, or pastoral fields. The nurses, therefore,experience the challenge of accessing resources such as the internetfor research (Kennedy,1999).Also transport and communication could also be a challenge whileattending to emergencies. The fact that the nurse work as the primaryhealth care providers requires them to commit to the community at alltimes (Hunter,2013).The nurses, therefore, experience poor working conditions since theyrarely get leisure time away from the “stressing” environment(Hunter,2013).
Amongthe challenges affecting nurses include isolation from otherprofessions that requires them to stretch their capabilities(Hounsgaard,Jensen, Wilche & Dolmer, 2013).The nurses may need to consult a pediatrician a gynecologist or otherhealth specialists in decision making but due to the geographicalseparation the nurse may not access the required information.
Culturaldifferences make the nurses develop culture shock as Emma Huntergives an account of her experience on Christmas Island in Australia(Hunter,2013).Formerly she referred to the people she cared for as patients but onthis island, she had to learn to regard them as clients. Emma alsorealized a different way of calling "the clients" by theirboat number and not by names (Hunter,2013).Some of the patients also refuse to take medicines claiming theirreligion does not allow them that poses a threat to their lives andothers surrounding. Different beliefs and cultural differences bringchallenges to the nurses while executing their duties, some of whichto solve them requires awareness and education to the refugees(Braultet al., 2014).
Communicationremains a necessity, even in health care service provision to helpthe nurses understand the patient’s problem and provide thepossible solution (Garakasha,2014).Also, the nurses act as social agents and even need to communicatewith the refugees to detect and in the healing process of posttraumatic trauma (Garakasha,2014).The refugees originate from various parts of the world and speakdifferent language nurses face difficulties while exchanginginformation with them. Some uses interpreters while a few learn thelanguages which become a difficulty (Braultet al., 2014).Another issue affecting the nurses and this case, those involved inmental health care includes emotional attachments that at timesbecome a burden to the nurses. The refugees share stories about theirexperiences that leaves a tragic picture in the mind of the nurses(Caulford,2006).Emma Hunter still recalls the tragic stories, some of the refugeesopened up including the young Afghan, who witnessed the murder of hisFather and brother and managed to escape.
Healthcare providers who operate in refugee camps, developing countries, rural areas, disaster stricken areas and other such conditions alsobenefit in various ways (Hunter,2013).They get to develop a better personality they learn how toappreciate life, resources, and their living conditions as they getexposure to even harsher situations in an environment of needypeople. They get a chance to show love and make a positive impact onpeople’s lives by giving them hope to live and offering theirservices. The nurses also get to adventure these refugee areas thatusually stay in isolation as they grow their career as well(Caulford,2006).
Themarginalized people and the refugees deserve treatment as among themconsists vulnerable people. Some of these people go for years ormonths without medication even while infected. Diseases spread amongthem, and they eventually die (Burgess,2004).Health care services should, therefore, be extended to such people tohelp them recover, get protection through immunization and recoveryfrom trauma. Nurses offering health care services in such areasexperience challenges as well as some benefits from working in therefugee communities. These areas should be equipped with informationand technology to allow the nurses to connect with otherprofessionals and also get resourceful information.
Thereare some health care organizations formed to assist the refugeeaccess health services like Refugee Health Nurse Program (RHNP). Suchand many other organizations train and recruit nurses from thecommunity to help the refugees. Through this, the interaction betweenthe communities and the nurse becomes easier. The government, healthorganizations, volunteers and well- wishers should come together andfind the possible solution to minimize these challenges that mayscare away nurses from providing health care services to people whodeserve their services.
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