Are you one of the people who have so many questions concerning primary care nursing? Oh yes you have come to the right place. Here are some of the questions you have:
What is primary care nursing? What are the duties of a primary care nurse? Who is eligible to train as a primary care nurse?
Are you able to upgrade if you train as primary care nurse? Is it possible to work out of Zimbabwe if you are a primary care nurse?
How much does a primary care nurse get? What is the difference between a primary care nurse and a registered general nurse?
WHAT IS PRIMARY CARE NURSING IN ZIMBABWE
Primary care is the first level of medical assistance you when you attend to a hospital or medical facility. A primary care nurse is a nursing professional that works in a primary health care setting.
A primary care nurse deals with a multitude of different areas of medicine and healthcare. The role focuses on caring for people and their general injuries and illnesses, rather than specific diseases. These are typically minor illnesses, such as colds and allergic reactions.
So basically primary care nursing particularly in Zimbabwe is mainly concerned on treatment of minor ailments and injuries. This includes administering preventative medicines and preliminary procedures.
Common diseases and illnesses that are dealt in primary care nursing include minor broken bones, allergic reactions, common cold and flu, management of long-term illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease as well as prevention of disease and illness through immunization and screening programmes.
These primary care nurses are in charge of carrying out initial examinations on patients before they see a doctor. They also have the ability to administer certain medications and vaccinations
WHAT ARE THE DUTIES OF A PRIMARY CARE NURSE
This type of role is usually that of a practice nurse, and has structured hours and scheduled patients, unlike nurses in hospitals who have to deal with sudden emergencies.
Primary care nurses in Zimbabwe all commonly found in Provincial hospitals, district hospitals and community clinics. Primary care nurses are also found in Doctor’s rooms as well as 24 hour medical facilities.
They are responsible for performing the initial patient physical consultation before a physician examines the patients. This often involves such things as measuring and recording things like height, weight, and vital signs.
A primary care nurse will also usually listen to and record any symptoms of illness or injury. If necessary, a primary care nurse will also collect samples, such as mucus or blood samples, which can be studied in a laboratory to help diagnose illnesses and infections.
At community level in Zimbabwe, primary care nurses plays a pivotal role of consulting patients, come up with a diagnosis and treatment plan as well as dispensing medications.
Because of this, primary care nurses often see their patients on a more regular basis than hospital nurses. They undertake regular check-ups, they do follow up visits especially in community clinics where they will be assisted by village health workers.
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR A PRIMARY CARE NURSE IN ZIMBABWE
To become a primary care nurse, like any other nurse, you must first get a certificate in primary care nursing, two years of full-time study.
You will need to be registered with the Nurse’s council of Zimbabwe. Basically in Zimbabwe, it is mandatory for a primary care nurse to have five O’Levels which include English and a science subject.
In addition to the academic requirements, the roles of a primary care nurse also necessitate extensive interpersonal skills. Dealing with a variety of different patients can be demanding, but rewarding, if you are able to communicate effectively.
As a primary care nurse, you will often be the first point of medical contact for patients coming into healthcare facilities.
Extensive organisational skills and an in-depth understanding of more common illnesses and injuries are a must, but making a good impression and setting peoples’ minds at ease are essential parts of the role.
This is especially important as individuals may be distressed by whatever injury or illness they or their family members present. It takes a considerate and compassionate person to deal with these stressful situations and to maintain great relationships with regular patients.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO TRAIN AS A PRIMARY CARE NURSE IN ZIMBABWE?
According to Ministry of Health And Child Care, enrollment of primary care nurse training is done twice a year and done by the ministry.
Application for the two-year Certificate in Primary Care training to be conducted by the Ministry of Health and Child Care are invited from sustainably qualified holders of the following qualifications:
- A minimum of 5 “O” Level subjects with passes in English Language, Mathematics and a Science subject and two others (that exclude practical subjects such as Fashion and Fabrics, Metal Work, Graphic Art, Art and Woodwork) at Grade C or better obtained from not more than two sittings with full certificates as Examination Result Slips are not accepted.
- Must be aged between the ages of seventeen (17) and thirty (37) years on the date of commencement of training. NB: Candidates should not be less than 17 years and not more than 37 years by the date of commencement.
- Nurse Aides and General Hands already working in the health care delivery system have an added advantage and their applications should be submitted through the Provincial/Principal Nursing Officers
- Only candidates who meet the recruitment criteria will be shortlisted for interviews
- Successful candidates will be informed via the MOHCC Electronic Platform and are required to have a satisfactory Medical Examination conducted by a Government Medical Officer. Accepted candidates will be deployed to where training posts exist throughout the country.
ARE YOU ABLE TO UPGRADE IF YOU TRAIN AS A PRIMARY CARE NURSE IN ZIMBABWE?
Many people think that it is not possible to climb the ladder once you become a PCN in Zimbabwe. Well that’s far from the truth, it all depends with the path you want to take.
As a PCN in Zimbabwe you have many opportunities to upgrade yourself. There are courses you may do such as administration, counseling, monitoring and evaluation etc, will leave it for the next article.
However there are some post basic nursing courses you may not be eligible to do such as ICU, Theatre nursing, Midwifery, Renal Nursing etc.
CAN I WORK OUTSIDE ZIMBABWE IF I DO PRIMARY CARE NURSING?
The sky is the limit, you can work anywhere in the world if you train as a primary care nurse in Zimbabwe.
It all depends with the requirements of the employer, for instance a Zimbabwe trained PCN can work as a health assistant in Ireland.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PCN AND RGN?
They are both nurses who perform same duties and responsibilities and work in same hospitals and health facilities.
A registered general nurse (RGN) is more senior to the primary care nurse (PCN). RGNs train for 3 years and are holders of diplomas and degrees whilst a PCN is a holder of a certificate.
Registered general nurses have wider opportunities of upgrading as well as finding job outside Zimbabwe
WHAT ARE THE SALARIES FOR PCN IN ZIMBABWE?
PCN in Zimbabwe earn as much as registered general nurses. Basic salary of a nurse in Zimbabwe ranges between $34000 to $37000 rtgs for those working in government. As for those in private sector and NGOs salaries range between $450 to $800 usd.
If you’re interested in a fulfilling and rewarding role, and a chance to work with people on a daily basis, have a look through our selection of primary care nurse roles for your perfect fit.
Whether you’re looking for a full-time or part-time role, Your World Healthcare has a great selection and you’re sure to find your ideal primary care nursing job in the UK.