Pa, allow me space in your widely read paper to raise my disappointment with the newly established pharmacy council and board. This council and board are formed after a sixteen years embargo on drug license issuing in the Gambia. The board announced that the license are to be given to Pharmacists, old dispensers and SRN midwives that served for 15 years post graduated as a midwife.
The SEN and CHN nurses are not allowed holding drug license even after qualifying as midwives for more than 15 years working experience. This clearly indicates that efforts of these two cadres of nurses in the Gambia are not honored within the ministry of health and they form the majority of nurses in the health sector.
The training modules of the SRN and SEN are the same with an only different of training period technically. The SRN training period is 3 years with three holiday period per year whereas the SEN training period is two with only one holiday period of 2 weeks per year. If one reduces the holidays from the SRN training period it will virtually be the same as that of the SEN.
It is also pathetic to learn that SEN and CHN midwives of any length of services have to work under newly pass out SRN. This de-motivating action has been inexistence since the inception of nursing in the Gambia that has led to the resignation of many qualified SENs and CHNs to the private sector and NGOs.
Many are saying that the newly formed pharmacy board and council are doing this to sabotage the Minister of health and his management team as well trying to incite uprising within the nursing sector. SENs and CHNs it is time for us to fight our case by going for sit down strike if government did not look into our plight. This action clearly indicates that the ministry has no retirement plans for SENs and CHNS.
Written By A Concerned SEN Midwife