Position Statement

Position Statement on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Coronavirus is transmitted by droplets and not by airborne. The virus is highly transmissible by touching contaminated surfaces and then touching ones’ face, eyes, nose and mouth without proper handwashing and symptomatic persons who do wear face mask or do not isolate themselves. This virus has victimized more than 120,000 people around the world and caused the death of more than 4,300 lives.1 Just recently, the World Health Organization Director General2,3 declared that the new coronavirus outbreak is a pandemic. This declaration increases the roles and responsibilities of health care professionals in the global arena.3

Our Filipino nurses around the world are fundamental participants in meeting the community health needs for everyone. This evolving coronavirus challenge is an opportunity to showcase how the Filipino nurses contribute immensely to the global health and welfare of the people. In the last few weeks, the international situation has changed dramatically and Filipino nurses are at the forefront of containing and influencing the mitigation of the spread of this disease by significantly participating in this battle alongside other health care professionals.

We, therefore, encourage Filipino nurses to continue maintaining the vigilant approach regarding preventive and promotive challenges of health care.

The Importance of Trust and Communication

Many studies around the world identify the most trusted professions, and nurses are always highly ranked in these surveys.4 Therefore, nurses must necessarily draw on the single-minded trust that patients have for them. This trust reflects the degree to which patients and their families depend on nurses as premier “translators” of medical information and other sources of information, and as primary care providers, educators, and active listeners to patients' health-related stories.5 Also, our nurses must play an integral role in communicating with their patients and their families along with appropriate, accurate and ethically correct information about this virus amidst the confusion and chaos of inconsistent and often gaps in knowledge. It is only through working together that we can mobilise and maximise each others’ expertise to curb this ongoing and escalating health problem.

Call to Action

No one can accurately predict how the COVID-19 pandemic will develop in the next few weeks. Therefore, we strongly encourage our Filipino nurses to be continuously informed of the disease and to work closely with other healthcare professionals to establish and maintain a comprehensive and collaborative plan of care. We also encourage our various Filipino nursing organizations across countries to actively participate in planning strategies together with other health care agencies and assist in the implementation of programs to ensure significant nursing contributions towards the health for all global citizenry.


References:

1. Chief Medical Officer coronavirus update

https://www1.racgp.org.au/newsgp/professional/chief-medical-officer-coronavirus-update

Retrieved on 12 March 2020

2. Coronavirus updates: WHO declares outbreak is now a pandemic

https://www.cbsnews.com/live-updates/coronavirus-updates-cases-fears-deaths-us-latest-2020-03-11/

Retrieved on 12 March 2020

3. Q&A: What the WHO pandemic declaration means

https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/qa-pandemic-declaration-means-69541987

Retrieved on 12 March 2020

4. Nurses and disaster risk reduction, response and recovery

https://www.icn.ch/sites/default/files/inline-files/ICN%20PS%20Nurses%20and%20disaster%20risk%20reduction%20response%20and%20recovery.pdf

5. Why Are Nurses So Trusted?

https://www.ausmed.com.au/cpd/articles/why-are-nurses-so-trusted

Retrieved on 12 March 2020

6. Nurses are the Most Trusted Profession

https://nursing.uw.edu/nurses-are-the-most-trusted-profession/

Retrieved on 12 March 2020

Board of Directors, Filipino Nursing Diaspora Network

Adopted 12 March 2020

Sydney Australia