A decade of ‘compassionate care’ – Nurse Ferguson’s journey
By Isanella Patoir
Ann Ferguson, a 33-year-old mother who works as a registered nurse at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC), is celebrating 10 years of offering compassionate care to patients.
The mother of two is the ward manager for the C-Section and High Dependency Units within the hospital’s maternity department; she is among the longest-serving nurses at the hospital.
Ferguson, during an interview with the News Room on Thursday, said it takes compassion, dedication and hard work to pursue nursing.
“I pursued nursing because I have a love to give patient care to the young, the old, regardless of the age, I think it is a very compassionate, a very kind, dedicated and hardworking task to dedicate your time and give care to others,” Ferguson said.
To further expand her knowledge in the field and patient care, Ferguson also started her Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) at the University of Guyana in 2021.
“I want to further my education. So that was one of the main reasons; another thing is that the world is getting more technological. In just a few years [having] a diploma in nursing or diploma in midwifery would just not be the basic requirements; you will need a degree,” Ferguson posited.
Ferguson started as a registered nurse in the male ward in 2012 where she spent three years and then moved on to the female ward. She was later transferred to the maternity unit and that is where she discovered her passion and love for the profession.
“In 2016, I pursued the midwifery programme and my career is still at maternity after completing the midwifery programme for one year,” Ferguson said.
For her, the midwifery journey has been exceptional; there is nothing that compares with assisting to bring life into the world.
“Working in the maternity area is one of the joys or the pleasure of mine to know that after the mother gave birth, how welcoming and how joyful she feels to know that she has passed that phase and, you, as nurses being there to support her from the delivery area to the postpartum care,” Ferguson said.
Aside from caring for new mothers and their babies while in the hospital, Ferguson also takes time to teach them how to recuperate, the importance of breastfeeding and the use of contraception, especially for c-section mothers.
Ferguson also spoke about how she has managed to persevere and adjust to the changes that came with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
She recalled navigating through “traumatising” times, especially with expectant mothers while at the same time trying to keep their families safe.
“It was very scary. It was very traumatising. Sometimes…to go back home to your family, [you’re] scared of the fact that you don’t know what you’re dealing with, that when and if they are going to contract it and we have had some patients who were positive.
“But we persevered, we get our own isolation area where we could have separated the positives from the negatives,” Ferguson explained.
But it did not take healthcare workers long to adjust to the new normal.
“We worked and we tried to give the best patient care. It was something that we all had to adjust to. And as the months and the days and the weeks went by, we adjusted,” Ferguson said.
For persons who wish to pursue a career in nursing, Ferguson said it is a very tedious but rewarding task.
“Nursing is a very noble; it is very joyful and it’s a dedicated profession. If you know that you cannot stomach blood, if you know you don’t want an old man nagging at you and things of that nature, I don’t think nursing is for you.
“It’s about you being compassionate. It’s about you being kind, it’s about you being patient and it is about you being loving.”
And this is her message on International Nurse’s Day: “to all the nurses whether it’s locally, whether it’s regionally, or internationally continue to do your best at all times to expand patient care.”