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Thursday, January 18, 2018
HomeHealthMauritius Nurses as Advocate: A Threat to a National Government?

Mauritius Nurses as Advocate: A Threat to a National Government?

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How can a nurse be a threat to a national government? Ask those who know Kallooa Bagooaduth, MSc, BSc, PG Dip. RN, the president of the Nursing Association of the tiny nation of Mauritius, or who heard him speak at the International Council of Nurses meeting in Melbourne, Australia, in May.

Bagooaduth was a panelist in a symposium developed by the Center for Health, Media & Policy at Hunter College. CHMP’s co-director Barbara Glickstein was another panelist who spoke about our work at the Center, and Diana Mason moderated the panel. They were joined by Eric Chan, the Principal Nursing Officer of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority in Hong Kong  and former Interim Nurse Scientist at the World Health Organization. More on Dr. Chan later.

Bagooaduth is a charge nurse at a hospital in Mauritius. Four years ago, he attended the quadrennial meeting of the International Council of Nurses and was inspired to get more involved in his country’s own health and nursing policies and advocacy. He ran for the presidency of the Mauritius Nursing Association and won.  Since that time, he has led the association in ways that have garnered public attention and made national policymakers nervous.

The Mauritius Nursing Association had not been visible as an advocate for the profession, nor for the public’s health. Over the past four years, Bagooaduth has led the association in developing an agenda for improving the working conditions for nurses in the country, as well as for promoting access to crucial health care services, such as abortion.

At the Melbourne conference, he discussed some of the accomplishments that were an outgrowth of using the media to get issues on the agenda of the public and policymakers, leading protests, and advocating for improving the health of the people:

Changing the requirement for the basic education of nurses from a certificate to diploma.

  • Reducing discrimination against female Nurses in pay and promotion criteria.
  • Improving nurses’ living conditions.
  • Improving the physical plant of hospitals.
  • Amending an 1893 law to decriminalize abortions in certain cases.

His advice to the audience:

  • provide information to the press that has real news value
  • be credible
  • be trustworthy
  • be available
  • speak in the public’s interest
  • be bold

He certainly exemplifies this last piece of advice. As one source who spoke off-the-record with us at the meeting, “Kallooa is not very popular with the government. I worry for his safety.”

We wish Kallooa Bagooaduth a long life of bold leadership. At the Melbourne meeting, the Maurtitius Nurses Association recieved ICN’s 2013 National Nursing Association Innovation Award and Bagooaduth was elected to Vice President of the Board of Directors of ICN. We expect he’ll be its president one day.

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Barbara Glickstein, RN, MS, MPH, and Diana Mason, RN, PhD, FAAN, Co-Directors, CHMP

Written by

Diana is a co-director of the GW Nursing Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement and founder of HealthCetera. She was previously president of the American Academy of Nursing. She is senior policy professor at George Washington University and the Rudin Professor of Nursing at Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing. She is a health policy expert and leader. Diana tweets @djmasonrn.

Latest comment

  • Dear Barbara,
    I still remember we met in Durban during the ICN conference. At that period of time i was the general secretary of the Mauritian Nursing Association and during the three years in office i had to do lot to advance nursing in Mauritius, such as advocating for the welfare of our nurses in every instances . I led the negotiations with the government several times together with Mr kallooa and other executive members to bring changes in education , condition of services and ongoing professional development for our fellow nurses. It is totally absurd, as claimed by Mr KALLOOA ,that the nursing Association was Bankrupt when he held office.. It is wise for those who dont know the mauritian context, that Mr Kallooa was an executive member of the Nursing Association during the period when the funds of the association was dilapidated. He presented a dark picture of his association at ICN melbourne, just to get the sympathy of all those leaders present.. Having large press coverage does not mean that he has solved all the problems nurses in Mauritius. Mr Kallooa had an agenda and he succeeded in his endeavor and used press cuttings aggressively. What he presented at the ICN is an erroneous picture of nursing in Mauritius, however nobody verified the veracity of his actions and everyone believed him. The reality about Mr KALLOOA is that he is a dictator and loves to claim that other nurse leaders have actively militated to achieve for nurses. The diploma in Nursing was a won battle,, the PRB REPORT 2008 recommended it and the government was ready to implement it. When i discuss this issue with Mr KALLOOA at that time , he was not interested as the ideas did not come from him. He is a specialist in marketing his own image and for that he can do any thing. The worst thing he has done, is that he expelled many influential members of the Nursing Association during the last five year as president of the Association. He is typical of African dictator. I am a victim of his malicious act. I was elected as executive member of the Association in 2011 as an independent candidate and after three month in office he expelled me both as an executive member and a member of the Nursing Association. The reason was that of having been chosen by the Ministry of Health to attend an international workshop IN kENYA organized by the African Regulatory Collaborative (ARC),under the aegis of the commonwealth secretariat.. I had no other option than to file a case with damage against the Nursing Association. The matter will be taken up in the supreme court of Mauritius on the 2nd september 2013. I know that justice is delayed but the truth will emerged as i believe in god . Mr kallooa wants to make everybody believe that he is in danger as he confronted the government, but this is only his plan to get the votes of other nurse leaders.. Mauritius is a safe country where human right is respected as compared to other African countries.and Mr KALLOA knows it better than anyone .
    Dear barbara please verifier my saying , i have all proofs for what i wrote.
    Dont hesitate .to contact me for further information. The world of Nursing should know about the violation of my right as a nurse leader forming part of a Nursing Association.and the hidden agenda of Mr KALLOOA!!

    krist dhurmah

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