The angels of mercy

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Al-Watan newspaper

IT has become part of an Arab culture that if an individual or a small group of individuals commits a mistake, its punishment must be borne by all innocent people. This was what happened last week in Taif where two nurses inhumanely abused a baby without any fear of God or respect for professional etiquette.

The family had handed the baby to the nurses to give it necessary care and treatment. But the nurses used the baby to have some fun without realizing the extent of their responsibility and the magnitude of the mistake they have committed. As a result of this irresponsible action, they lost their jobs at a time when it is difficult to find employment.

I don’t have to mention the volume of shame and disgrace caused by this action to them and their families and this humiliation will pursue them for a long time to come.

However, I would like to emphasize that if two or three nurses violated their professional ethics, there is no justification to generalize their mistake and punish all Saudi nurses, ignoring the noble and important services they render to society.

We know that Saudi nurses act with a high sense of responsibility and work even beyond their official hours, displaying the highest point of humanitarian care. Several incidents have been reported depicting their angelic role.

For example, we cannot forget how Suad Al-Saadi, a nurse from Madinah, saved a sick woman. The woman, who was suffering from acute depression after the death of her father, ran away from the emergency clinic to jump down from the hospital’s roof. The nurse embraced the woman in a unique gesture of humaneness and successfully persuaded her to go back to the clinic just minutes before she was to end her life.

In a village east of Unaizah, nurse Hadeel Al-Saeed presented a glittering picture of a noble woman. Hadeel’s action showed that for Saudi nurses, their profession is a great humanitarian responsibility.

After work on that day, Hadeel decided to visit the rural Oshaziya festival. No sooner she entered the festival venue than she heard a SOS call from people on the road.

When she went to the spot she was surprised to see an Egyptian child whose heartbeat had stopped and his father was in a perplexed condition.

Hadeel sprang into action and provided CPR to the child until his heartbeat resumed. Hadeel did not leave the child to visit the festival but stayed with him to provide necessary care.

None of us will forget Ameera Ismail, the heroine of the tragedy at Jazan General Hospital, who saved seven children from the massive fire endangering her own life. She stood in the middle of the fire without caring about her life to save the seven children.

Areej Al-Qahtani is another nurse who deserves commendation for her heroism. Areej happened to be in one of the commercial compounds in Riyadh when a person came under gunfire. She did not hesitate to provide him with emergency medical assistance to save his life. She did everything possible to control bleeding from the wound until the ambulance and first-aid service arrived at the scene.

A similar incident took place in front of Afrah Al-Shammari, a nurse from south of Hail, with differences in details. Five young men were injured in a traffic accident on Al-Mutlaq Road.

Afrah happened to be in that spot as she was picnicking there with her family. She left her family and rushed to the accident scene to shoulder her responsibility as a nurse to provide them with first-aid.

One of the injured was in a serious condition and required pulmonary resuscitation for 20 minutes. That man unfortunately died when his heartbeat stopped, but Afrah tried her best to save his life.

Another victim had his hand fractured along with head injuries. She used his headdress to tie his hand with neck, and covered his wounds, and continued to reassure him until aid arrived. She then moved on to the next victim, who was a 9-year old child and had fractures in his hand, thigh and leg. She did not leave the accident victims until all of them were taken to hospital.

Perhaps many people would not know the story of nurse Abeer A-Anazi, who donated part of her liver to save a girl whom she did not know. Abeer never hesitated in donating her liver because her main concern was how to save that girl from certain death.

These incidents highlight the nobility of Saudi nurses and the high humanitarian values they uphold. I am sure these nurses will remain angels of mercy ... and our nation will be proud of them.

But those who misbehave and disrespect professional ethics should be considered extraneous to the nursing profession. They do not belong to the community of Saudi nurses, who do their work with responsibility and dignity, which is integral to their humanitarian role.


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