Working as a professional nurse with older persons while studying to become a medical doctor in these coronavirus times has been no mean feat for this young man, who has never been one to shy away from a challenge.
“Be it in my private or professional life, I have always pushed myself to go further. The challenge of the MD course is equally daunting and exciting in my eyes. Towards the end of my final year in nursing, I was fully invested in the idea. My family and friends were very supportive, so I decided to go for it,” says Andre.
“As a nurse, I enjoy helping residents, explaining anything that they are unsure about. As a doctor, I feel that I would be better equipped to aid people and make a noticeable difference.”
Having graduated from the University of Malta in 2019, Andre is more than happy to form part of the team at Roseville, an elderly home run by CareMalta, where he has been working for these last 14 months.
The youngest in a family of four, the 23-year-old is the only one to have shown an interest in healthcare, “so my path was unexpected,” he says.
“However, after a nasty football injury at the age of 11, I couldn’t help but admire the work of a number of healthcare professionals during my recovery. While not fully set on becoming a nurse, I knew I wanted my studies to revolve around health and well-being. The choice was between nursing, physiotherapy and radiography. I went for the first, as I felt that nursing was vast and encompassed various topics.”
Andre’s role has been crucial since the start of the pandemic, especially as his work is to nurse vulnerable older persons, who have been hit hardest by COVID-19.
“A nurse’s place is not just in intensive care or in emergency scenarios. Nursing is a mixture of medical knowledge, empathy and a caring disposition.”
The profession was once described to Andre as ‘a beacon of light’, a description he has come to cherish and believe in, especially during these difficult times.
“COVID-19 has accentuated the role of the nurse. It has become our duty to tackle misinformation and spread more awareness. The pandemic seems to require a balance between being cautious and careful on the job, as well as working harder than ever before.”
Does nursing deserve to be more recognised locally?
“The nursing profession is one of the most genuine. A dedicated nurse does not cut corners or work short hours. To a certain extent, nursing, locally, is still regarded as the ‘dirty’ medical alternative that comes with undesirable tasks, and sometimes also as a woman’s job,” says Andre.
“Malta still lags behind in terms of respect for our profession. However, I’m very optimistic about the future, owing to the fact that nursing is the most varied profession in healthcare, with more people beginning to understand the importance of our job.”
Those interested to join our team at CareMalta can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.