BY Fast Company 2 MINUTE READ

Since the onset of Covid-19, nurses have been our unsung heroes, remaining at the frontline of the pandemic. However, not much has been done to help them emotionally during this challenging time.

In light of this, local software company Patient Health (Pty)Ltd, will launch ‘Afrinurse’ – a digital platform designed to empower and support nurses throughout Africa, on International Nurses Day, celebrated annually on 12 May.

The International Council of Nurses (ICN) estimates that the ageing of the nursing workforce, combined with declining population growth worldwide, could lead to a potential shortfall of up to 13 million nurses by 2030.

In addition, Covid-19 has taken an emotional toll on South African nurses and their families. It has led to significant staff shortages. With hospitals reaching capacity, nurses have had to work overtime and are suffering from mental, financial, and physical fatigue. Out of fear, some have resigned or taken a break from nursing to protect themselves and their families from the virus, leaving them without an income.

Patient Health (Pty) Ltd, a company incubated at The Innovation Hub’s Maxum Smart Business Incubation Programme, aims to do its part to help support nurses throughout Africa during this difficult time.

The company has created a digital platform that gives nurses access to mental health tools and a booking portal that connects them to psychologists and other healthcare professionals online.

The platform also boasts educational videos that assist nurses in managing the infections, symptoms, vaccinations, and other relevant topics. An exciting feature of Afrinurse is the built-in ‘job board’, where nurses can find job listings and post their availability to work. A financial advisory feature is available, providing access to financial advisors and debt managers.

“With this platform, we take care of the overall wellness of nurses, mentally, physically, and financially, by giving them an easy and secure platform to access verified professionals online. We also empower nurses by giving them access to practical, verified information while virtually connecting them to each other,” says Sylvester Msuthwana, Founder of Patient Health.

The platform’s ‘Nurse Hero’ feature, allows first-time nurses to be celebrated for excellent service by patients and doctors through a rating and rewards system. Nurses can communicate with one another with the ‘Ask a nurse’ function to transfer knowledge and skills to other nurses across Africa.

“As The Innovation Hub, we are proud to support companies such as Patient Health, knowing that they are doing their part to make a difference in the lives of our essential workers,” says Advocate Pieter Holl, CEO of The Innovation Hub.

“Now, more than ever is the time to stand together and work towards the greater good of our country and Africa as a whole. We salute our nurses and thank them for what they have done and continue to do for us. We hope that our platform can be of assistance and support to all nurses,” says Msuthwana.