Political history of nursing education
The trends of nursing education in Kenya have been changing ever since the country became gained its independence. During the colonial period, nursing education was structured in the same way as the British system. However, in the early 1950’s nursing education system did not have the notable conventional structure (Mutea & Cullen,). This was mainly due to the ardent poverty that the country experienced during that period. There was no legislation to govern nursing practices in the country despite the numerous efforts to do so. Eventually, in 1983 the nurses Act Cap 257 was passed leading to the creation of the Nursing Council of Kenya (Walton-Roberts, 2015)
The nursing education system is not a new concept in Ireland (Mutea & Cullen, 2012). Legislation governing the nursing system in the country was formulated as early as 1900 (Mutea & Cullen, 2012). In 1919, the first legislation on nursing was formed and it still exists as The Nurses Registration Act. Just like in Kenya, this led to the formation of the Nursing Counsel for Ireland (Mutea & Cullen, 2012). Ireland has had a strong relationship between the government and the nursing practitioners. The government is a major decision maker in the nursing system and it owns most of the nursing training colleges in the country.
Government and nursing organizations influencing nursing education
The government of Kenya works closely with the nursing fraternity through the ministry of Health. The government contributes mostly in the training and deployment of nurses throughout the country from their various colleges. The most reputable training institute for nurses is known as the Kenya Medical Training College and it is fully owned by the government.
Similarly, Ireland has several private organizations that focus on teaching affordable and valuable nursing practices (Mutea & Cullen, 2012). However, the nurses associations in the country have greatly contributed to the political support that the nursing fraternity in the country enjoys. Through these associations, the country has been able to influence reforms and to make new proposals in an effort to improve the nursing education system.
Current system of nursing education
The current nursing education system is efficiently structured. However, the system is limited in terms of teaching advanced nursing practices. The highest level of education that the nursing system offers is a bachelor’s degree, which was introduced recently in the country. Normally, most nursing training centers offer certificates and diplomas. The system has not developed into an advanced nursing system where practitioners can pursue up to a masters degree. In most cases, only doctors and specialized medical practitioners can pursue a bachelor’s degree and a master’s level degree in the field of healthcare. Advanced nursing in the country has not been fully integrated in the education system.
In Ireland, the highest level of nursing education is also similar to the Kenyan system. A degree in nursing is the heist level of education that an individual can go in regard to healthcare practice. However, the system is split into different areas of specialization, which includes general nursing, children/general mental health, intellectual disability, as well as midwifery (Glavin & Leahy-Warren, 2013). The education system does not focus on clinical theoretical aspects of nursing. Consequently, this has contributed to the rising number of inadequately trained specialist.
Kenya does not have a master’s degree or a postgraduate program for general nursing. However, some universities offer master’s degree courses in specialized nursing practices. These courses include Master of Science in Nursing (critical care).
Similarly, Ireland does not offer a postgraduate degree in general nursing or advanced nursing practices. However, specialized nursing skills are available as postgraduate programs. One of the major postgraduate courses offered in Ireland universities is the Masters Degree in Nursing and Midwifery (Chan, 2013).
Reflection on nursing education
The government is the principle financier of nursing education researches even though there are many other private organizations that have contributed to the same. Therefore, the private sector plays a major role in the development and structuring of the nursing education system as well as influencing the quality of nursing practices.
In Ireland, the government is also a major contributor to the nursing education system planning. The government provides funding for research and implementation of improved practices in the education system. The private sector as well as other non-profit organizations have also contributed to the development and structuring of nursing systems in the country.
Chan, Z. C. (2013). A systematic review of critical thinking in nursing education. Nurse Education Today, 33(3): 236-240.
Glavin, K., & Leahy-Warren, P. (2013). Postnatal depression is a public health nursing issue: perspectives from Norway and Ireland. Nursing research and practice, 1(1): 23-34.
Mutea, N., & Cullen, D. (2012). Kenya and distance education: a model to advance graduate nursing. International journal of nursing practice, 18(4): 417-422.
Walton-Roberts, M. (2015). International migration of health professionals and the marketization and privatization of health education in India: From push–pull to global political economy. Social Science & Medicine, 124, 374-382.