Third Nursing Conference discusses future of nursing practice in UAE

Abu Dhabi: Hiraina McKenzie, Staff Support Specialist, TaHospital, Al Ain, will discuss the “Value of Diversity – Nursing in the UAE” at the 3rd Nursing Conference which will take place on 14-16 October 2012 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center.

The Nursing Conference is part of the 6th annual Abu Dhabi Medical Congress (ADMC) and will address the challenge of preparing nurses with the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to continuously improve the quality and safety of the healthcare systems in which they work.

According to McKenzie, international best practice of valuing diversity in the workplace has a broader definition of diversity. Diversity is considered to encompass most characteristics that individuals have that affect the way they think and do things. The key concepts of human rights, equality and promotion of equity in the workplace underpin best practice standards and recommendations.

“We in the UAE can most definitely learn from these but we need to always consider the context and the differences here, acknowledging that changes need to be realistic to be effective,” she added.

When considering diversity in nursing, language can most definitely be a barrier for all communication within a healthcare facility.

“At Tawam, we estimate that 80% of our professional nurses come from countries where English is not their native tongue or where English is spoken as a dual language. A minority of our professional nursing staff [38%] are native Arabic speakers. These figures illustrate opportunity for miscommunication in the workplace,” said McKenzie.