We recently wrote to The Straits Times with regard to an article in The Sunday Times titled “Hired as a nurse, treated as a maid” dated October 22, 2017. Although the letter was not published, we would like to share our response with you. We read the article with concern. The most important task at hand is to educate the public and related associations and organisations on the roles and responsibilities of nurses. Nurses are qualified professionals trained to take care our loved ones when they are at their most vulnerable.
A common misperception of nurses is that they are blue collar workers that do menial work. This is very far from the truth. In our experience running an online Caregiving marketplace, we have worked with thousands of Caregivers, nurses included. We noticed that for many, caregiving and nursing is not only a profession, it is a calling. The oldest Nurse on our platform is a retiree at 82 years old who feels that she has many years more of caring left in her. Another Nurse on our platform looks after her disabled son in the day, and takes the night shift for home nursing cases. There is a wonderful caring story behind every one of the Caregivers and nurses we know. It takes a special kind of person to be a Nurse.
Running a freelancing Caregiver marketplace for home care means that we have to take extra precautions and steps in informing and educating our users what Nurses do. In addition to having clear service guidelines in every service posting, we also blog about Nurses and share their stories. We have introduced measures such as a 24-hour call center where Nurses out in the field can call in should they need backup or advice about an uncomfortable situation, and have made training courses accessible and affordable for Caregivers. However, this is not enough and we do believe that our industry needs to come together to provide more blanket support for the Caregivers and Nurses that we rely on for care.