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May 12, 2020

Nurses: A Voice to Lead; Nursing the World to Health

The COVID-19 pandemic has shed further light on the critical work that nurses do to save lives. International Nurses Day was observed today across the globe to recognize the noble job of nurses. Nurse Deborah Latchman of the Belize Healthcare Partners Limited has been at the frontlines for forty-three long years. She says, the hours are long, the job is hard, but the reward is worth every minute of it. Here is Duane Moody with a report.


Duane Moody, Reporting

They provide an essential service, especially during health crises, but since March eleventh when the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic, healthcare workers have been recognised as heroes. May sixth was the commencement of Nurses Week 2020, but the activities planned had to be cancelled due to novel virus. The week culminated today, May twelfth, which is celebrated as International Nurses Day.


Deborah Latchman

Deborah Latchman, Unit Manager, Belize Healthcare Partners Limited

“For me, it is extremely special and for the first time worldwide, nurses are being recognized as heroes. I have always felt that we have been heroes, but for now we are being seen; what we do is being appreciated and that makes our day, makes us really feel happy that people understand what we do as nurses.”


Deborah Latchman is a career nurse, celebrating forty-three years in the profession this month. She says that contrary to naysayers, being a nurse is a rewarding experience.


Deborah Latchman

“It’s the simple things that make our job meaningful. Like the patient that you see recover and go home and that patient meets you on the street and you might not remember them, but they always remember you, “Nurse, you did this for me.”  And it is the gratitude that you receive that makes it worthwhile.”


Deputy Director of Health Services and Chief Nursing Officer, Nurse Ann Matute says that there is a shortage of nurses in the healthcare system. Even as the country faced a crisis, these nurses went beyond their normal hours and worked to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.


Ann Matute

Nurse Ann Matute, Chief Nursing Officer, Ministry of Health

“All our nurses in the public health system; we have five hundred and ninety-eight nurses and we had a challenge because we have a shortage of nurses, but I must commend them that they all did a very good job; everybody fight the challenges that we had. We had most nurses coming out and working the twelve-hour shifts and going a long way in making our country, for now, COVID-19 free. For this year, we had a lot of activities planned, but unfortunately everything was cancelled because of the pandemic. But I want to commend all the nurses for a job well done.”


So if you would like to become a nurse, here’s why.


Deborah Latchman

“The hours are long, the job is hard, but the reward – you cannot have another job with a greater reward. You have to come and nurse with your heart and you are always rewarded when you bring your heart to the job.”


The theme for Nurses Week 2020 is “Nurses: A voice to Lead; Nursing the World to Health.” Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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