Final year students and staff of the Zuarungu Nurses Training College (ZNTC) in the Upper East Region, have undergone a psychological first aid therapy and skills training to equip them with the psychological adjustments needed in managing the sick in the COVID- 19 era.
The training, which was organized by ZNTC and facilitated by the Total Life Enhancement Center Ghana(TOLEC Ghana) to help the students adjust in the COVID- 19 situation, was held in two sessions, one for tutors and staff and final year students who constituted the Registered General Nursing and Nurse Assistant Clinical students.
Mr Michael Mantamia, the Principal of the school in an interview with the GNA at Zuarungu in the Bolgatanga East District, explained the importance of the exercise, saying much as tutors impacted knowledge to students and provided counseling sessions, students and staff also had personal challenges which sometimes showed up during examination period.
“Much as teachers impact knowledge to students, there are certain aspects of the social lives of some students that sometimes appear awkward especially when they are stressed, as during examinations and therefore the training will help release some of the tension as well as help measure their performance”.
Mr Mantania expressed worry that psychological care in schools had been relegated to the background, but was needed in the trying period of COVID- 19 to help students and staff manage their challenges and anxieties.
He said the training would help propel students’ academic work and psychologically help tutors in their tuition and the institution as a whole to continue with its plans without giving up.
He said all final year students had reported to school and would, for the next six weeks, prepare themselves for their examinations.
To reduce physical contact, he said beds in halls of residence were reduced and indicated that all the students were housed on campus.
He said Veronica buckets, were procured while gloves, sanitizers and overalls, in case of emergency, were at hand.
Mr Mantania thanked the District Health Director and team for their immense technical and material support and the Bolgatanga East District Assembly for providing the institution with PPE.
Mr Peter Minitir Amadu, the Executive Director of (TOLEC GH) and lead facilitator, in his presentation said the therapy will help students and staff appreciate the pandemic and the need to protect themselves and be able to help those in need of their services.
The themes discussed included; the impact of the disaster and emotional phases of a disaster that encapsulates medical, psychological and mental footprints that COVID- 19 will bring to bear on all.
He said attitude and endurance were key in helping to win the battle of the pandemic.
He said one of the likely effects of the pandemic in future could be Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCDs) because “we will become used to doing certain things and that can remain and become a dent on our lives and therefore in the midst of safety precautions, we should not overdo things that will inure to another level of challenge to deal with”.