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Nurses footprints Bahamas up to 1983 plus volume II


Material Information

Nurses footprints Bahamas up to 1983 plus volume II
Physical Description:
15 p. : ill. ; 21 cm.
Bowen, Hilda V., 1923-2002
Hilda V. Bowen
Place of Publication:
Nassau, Bahamas
Publication Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Nursing -- Bahamas -- History   ( lcsh )
Nurses -- Bahamas -- Biography


Statement of Responsibility:
Hilda V. Bowen

Record Information

Source Institution:
College of the Bahamas, Nassau
Holding Location:
College of the Bahamas, Nassau
Rights Management:
All rights reserved by the source institution.
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I I Volume II NURSES FOOTPRINTS BAHAMAS Up to 1983 Plus by Hilda V. Bowen, M.B.E. October, 1993


INTRODUCTION cont'd If some of them were shown the letter of appointment it would not have made any difference to their attitude black nursing sister, no can do It was obvious that the action taken by the Governor Sir Robert Neville to break down barrier or what you would wish to call it was not known Within a few days after arrival an interview with Miss Denise Dane the Matron of the Bahamas General Hospital took place The date and time to report for duty as Nursing Sister in charge of Out-Patient and Casualty Department with responsibility for the Eye Clinic was set Other relevant matters were discussed. Following the interview, a tour of the hospital w ith Ms Dane who introduced members to a number of medical nursing and other disciplines who were met on route. The tour ended in the Doctor s Lounge where tea was served to doctors and nursing sisters on duty Arrangements for transport was made by Matron to take me back home to Cunningham Lane. THE FIRST DAY -At 8 a.m Monday, October 5, 1953 the arrival of the Bahamian Sister at the front entrance of the Bahamas General Hospital brought staff and others from all directions into the front hall all eyes were focused on the head piece the Nursing Sister s Veil. On entry to the Matron's Office there were a few Nursing Sisters who awaited the return to the office in order to receive the hospital night report Introduction to all present was made prior to the reading of the report. Approximately at 9:00 a.m Matron Dane arrived who after a brief report from the Night Sister led the way to the Out-Patient and Casualty building. Activities during the first day included the introduction by Matron to the medical nursing and other staff during an inspection of the Out Patient and Casualty Department and other departments located within the building Example Relieving Office X-Ray, Ambulance and Dental. On route to the Chief Medical Officer s office the main Dispensary was toured and staff was introduced. The next stop was the historical building, Board of Health built in 1902 The office of the Chief Medical Officer the Health Board Room and the Public Health Department were located on the top floor After the introduction to the Chief Medical Officer Dr Norman Mcclennan in discussion he pointed the difference of the role of the Nursing Sister in the United Kingdom and in the Bahamas with special mention of the lack of Medical Staff (Doctors). The next office visited was that of the Hospital Superintendent Mr. Hubert Knowles situated on the ground floor. 2 INTRODUCTION cont'd On the ground floor were the office of the Hospital Superintendent and Biological Laboratory During the visit with the hospital arrangement i n relation to transportation was made known by him without reference to living accommodations. No request for accommodation was r:nade at that time. However within the year after the study of the cond1t1on of Service for recruited Nursing Sisters an application was submitted and resulted in the payment of living out allowances of per month Grape vine news revealed that five of the six Nursing Sisters employed (95 % ) had plan to tender letters of resignation if accommodation in the Sisters residence (mess) was offered to the Bahamian S i sters On arr i val at the Doctors Lounge at approximately 11 :00 a.m an introduction to all present was made by the Matron Facial expressions spoke louder than words The attitude displayed was contrary to the one I experienced studying in England Follow ing this coffee break at the Doctor s Lounge . I returne d to the Out-Patient and Casualty Department. The crowd in the waiting room were far less than the crowd seen before the tour Among those in the waiting room were newspaper reporters from the local paper and Ms. Heather Woods from Z N S who wanted an interview which took place before lunch. On return to the Department at approximately 2:00 p m about two hours was spent with Mrs Rosa Major the Senior Staff Nurse at the Department getting necessary information At 4 :00 p.m Sister Mary Hughes arrived and invited me to join the Sisters at the Nurses Graduation Exercise which was held in the classroom located in the basement of the hospital. Lady Neville the Governor s wife made the presentation of Certificates pins and prizes to the graduates. The Lady Neville Challenge Cup was presented to Nurse Naom i Bain At the end of the Matron s Report she announced the historical event that a Bahamian Nursing Sister had joined the staff Everyone applauded A Tea Party for those present followed. As the end of the first day was drawing to a close it marked the beginning of thirty-one of nursing service as a Nursing Sister, Matron and Principal Matron/Director of Nursing. To God be the glory. Suggested for reading on activities etc on Nursing (1) Birds Eye View Nurses Footprints (2) Volume One Nurses Footprints 3


POSITIONS HELD IN THE BAHAMAS PUBLIC SERVICE !;::;: ::::::::;::'':::::: :::::::::::::::i: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::.::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::i:i::::%ii:::i' ::::::::::::::::::;::::': :::::::::::::::::;:ie::,:i:i 1 1942 1949 : 2 1947 1950 : 3 1950 -1951: 4. 1952: Six Months 5 1952 : Six Months 6 5th Oct. 1953 : 1950/57 7 Aug., 1959 : 8 1962 : 9 1965 : 10 1970 : 11. 1980 : Sept. 1983 : 12 1971 1976 : Teacher Eastern Junior School Nassau Bahamas General Nursing. Student Nurse Farnborough Hospital Kent England. Ophthalmic Nursing Moorfield Eye Hospital London Ophthalmic Nursing Certificate and Diploma Part I Midwifery, Elsie Inglis Hospital Edinburgh Scotland Part II Midwifery St i rling Royal Infirmary Stirlingshire Scotland Nursing Sister Bahamas General Hospital Bahamas Royal College Nursing London Hospital Administrator Course Assistant Matron Princess Margaret Hospital. Matron Princess Margaret Hospital Bahamas. Principal Matron Ministry of Health Bahamas Chief Nursing Officer Ministry of Health & National Insurance, Bahamas D i rector of Nursing M i n i stry of Health Bahamas. Chairman Nursing Council Commonwealth of the Bahamas 13. 1977 : Member Nursing Council Commonwealth of the Bahamas 14 1978 1983 : Chairman Nursing Council Commonwealth of the Bahamas 15. 1965 Nursing Superintendent Bahamas Branch Br i tish Red Cross Soc i ety Honorary Vice President of Bahamas Branch of British Red Cross 16 1970 Member of Steering Committee Regional Nursing Body 17 1980 Temporary Nursing Advisor World Health and Pan American 18. 1969 M B E For development of Nursing in the Bahamas awarded by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth. 4 ...... .... .. .. ....... HiJJa,, ......... 5


T.:::::O:ER:.1::.:::.11'/\"!L::.--HAS BEEN APPOINTED ... .... N.URSJ. N G ....... S.U.P. E .RLN.. T END .EN. T ... OF THE ...................... 8.A.HAM. A S .............................................. . BRANCH subject to the Rules and Regulations of the Society Date ... . . f ... 0-1.._8_.L.6. . S. 6 ROYAL COLLEGE OF NURSING g,mJcd 1916 c{Lcorpo.-aled LJI c!J<.o pa/ @/rade r 1928 is to QCertifp tbat ............. ............................ Jia1 cornp/ei.d a cour. a[ 1heor1l;ca/ and pracl;ca/ ;,.,/rucl;o., ;., ()1.,,.,;.,11 f'Adrn;.,;,lral;o., ( <;}fc,.p;1a/) ........... .U.. :lt: .. .. : ....... .... @J101rrna.1 a[@ounc;f. ..... . t:.la...t..t ... ( ... ca.A.f .c:..t....G..&.. ..... ........... ClJ;r1clor ;., the <5Jucal;o., ClJ1parlrnenl. 7


__ ............. .. -" -. -----,._,. .............. 'Reg. 1:\o .:168'[6* ,i hi ITtnby tlJat . ---l.filba_13j)_mm_, ____ tuas abmitttb bp to tfJe tntral part of tfJe l\egister maintaineb hp t{Je Council for

The day staff reported off-duty at 4 : 30 p m and those allocated for even ing duty reported off at 8 : 00 a m The establ i shment of trained staff for late shi ft cons i sted of : 1 Nursing Sister 1 Charge Nurse for Bahamas General Hospita l 1 Ward Master for Male Mental Ward 1 Charge Nurse for the Female Mental Ward 1 Charge Nurse for Prospect Hospital Auxiliar i es and attendants were allocated to all wards and departments Other staff on call : 1 Medical Officer for the Casualty and Public Wards 1 X-Ray Technic ian 1 Lab Technician The surgeon and doctor in charge of Children and Maternity Wards were called when required Private doctors for those patients warded on the Private Ward Duties during the 3 : 00 p m to 11 : 00 p m shift: The minimum of two rounds at the Bahamas General Hospital and at the Mental Wards Prospect Hospital when it was necessary Required to be present at all deliveries on the Maternity Ward when possible a visit to all mothers and babies within the hour after delivery Nursing Administrative duties included : Writing of the Hospital Report on security Admissions and discharges during the day Making the necessary arrangements for emergency flights. Reporting to Chief Medical Officer Matron on any matters of importance Contact relatives of patients and hospital chaplain when necessary Welfare of Nursing Staff The Nursing Sister on night duty i.e 11 : 00 p m to 9:00 a m., duties were similar to that of the late shift. With addition to the Night Report for the hospital a special report was prepared for the Chief Medical Officer with the twenty-four hour statistical report and admission/discharge slips. The Nursing Sister was allocated for night duty twice a year for a period of fourteen days It is of interest to note the following : The main entrance to the hospital and ambulance doors were not locked. One porter sat in the main hall. The police control car kept surveillance It was safe to walk from the main building to the Out Patients alone or drive to Prospect Hospital. Dangerous were rounds of the Mental Wards very few rounds were completed without being drenched with urine or face covered with spit. Rooms were over crowded often a patient might be found hanging from the ceiling AMONG THOSE WHO WERE INTRODUCED TO ME DURING THE TOURS WERE MANY WHO ARE DECEASED: DR. HUGGINS Surgeon DR. CARNNIL GORDON Ob stetrician DR. WALTER LORENZ DR. HENRY PODLESWKI Psychiatrist DR. STANLEY MACMAHNON MR. HUBERT KNOWLES Hospital Super intende nt MR. GEORGE BERTRAM STRACHAN -Chi ef Pharmac i st MR. CLEMENT MAYNARD NOW SIR CLEMENT -Chi ef Lab Tech. MR. HENRY TAYLOR NOW SR. HENRY Public Health Department MR. RODRICK SIMMS Relieving Off i cer MR. MICHAEL MARTINBOROUGH Transport Chief MR. JOHN CLEARE -Ambulance Driver MRS MALONE Chief Telephonist MRS. DELORIS ALBURY Telephonist MRS BEDFORD House Keeper MS. PAT STUART Telephonist MR FARQUHARSON Head of the Maintenance Department MR. J DEAN -Chief Electrician MR. THADEUS DARLING Physiotherapist SENIOR STAFF NURSES INCLUDED: MRS HAZEL DARLING Operating Theatre MRS ALBERTHA MOXEY Maternity Ward MS SYBIL CAREY Children s Ward MRS NAOMI ALBURY Pr i vate Ward OTHER STAFF : MR. VERNAL ADDERLEY In charge of Hospita l Dispensary MRS LOCKHART Head Cook MRS NORMA ALLEN Blood Bank PRIVATE NURSE NORA SYMONETTE PRIVATE DOCTORS EARDLEY AND DR. POAD. MR. NESBITT HEAD GARDENER MS. CAROLINE BURNSIDE Physiotherap i st MS KATHLEEN ALBURY CMO Secretary MS. EMILY GIBSON Matron Secretary THE NURSES WARDEN 11


Presentation of Birds Eye View of Nurses Footprints to former Minister of Health, Mr. Charles Carter Director of Nursing, Mrs. I. Baker Mr. Carter, Permanent Secretary, Mrs. E. Isaacs. ,..,.,..,.,.,..,..,.,.,..,..,.,...,.,., Bahamian Red Cross Fair March 1975 Icecream Stall of the Matron and Nursing Sisters for many years Pictured: Miss Bowen Mrs. Beverley Ford The late Mrs. Eloise Penn in background Staff Nurse Samuels. 14 Photo taken in Matron's Office, Princess Margaret Hospital. View: Western and Southern side of Out Patient and Casualty Dept. in 1953, Princess Margaret Hospital, formerly known as Bahamas General Hospital. 15


Female Lunatic Ward, Crazy Hill, Princess Margaret Hospital Compound. Male Lunatic Ward was located on the Crazy Hill sight of Chief Medical Officer residence on the Crazy Hill. (See Birds Eye View, Page 2). F. ?P ;>. .Z..c:: ..... Gate House at Shirley Street Entrance of the Princess Margaret Hospital 16 CEES HONOUREES The College of the Bahamas Continuing Education and EXtension Services Divi s1oq salutes retired Educators for their valuable contribution in the field of Adult Education The Glinton family congratulates Miss Althea Mortbner: ..... Congratulations to Mr Patrick Bethel and Mr Cecil Bethel : Best wishes and congratulations to Mrs Corrine Thompson from Claude Williams Mr. Haldane Chase and The Poiter family extend best wishes to MisS Emma Poiter Paula and Leroy Mitchell and family congratulate Miss Hilda Bowen. MR. PATRICK BETHEL MR. CECIL BETHEL MRS coftmm: 1110MSPON M188 HILDA BOWEN Mr. Cecil Bethel was Teacher at Government High School at the time Hilda Bowen was a student 1939-1941 T H ANKS TO: M R S. JOANN F RANCIS AND MS. KADRIA SEAR S OF THE NASSAU GUARDIAN (1844 ) LTD.

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