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Mudukaki Recognized For Contributing Towards Professionalising Nursing in Uganda

Mudukaki started practising nursing in 1952 and worked in Iganga and Tororo district hospitals before she was deployed at Mulago National Referral Hospital. Upon her retirement, Mudukaki worked as a school nurse at Buddo Senior Secondary School for six years, before opening a private clinic that she later closed after developing cardiac challenges.
90 year old, Alice Nakanyike Mudukaki, holds a certificate of appreciation awarded to her by nurses, under their umbrella body of Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union-UNMU.

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90-year-old Alice Nakanyike Mudukaki, a retired nurse has received recognition for her contribution to the professionalisation of nursing. Mudukaki, who currently lives a quiet life in Ngandu village, in Nabuti zone, in Mukono district, retired from Mulago National Referral Hospital in 1990.  

Mudukaki started practising nursing in 1952 and worked in Iganga and Tororo district hospitals before she was deployed at Mulago National Referral Hospital. Upon her retirement, Mudukaki worked as a school nurse at Buddo Senior Secondary School for six years, before opening a private clinic that she later closed after developing cardiac challenges.  

While awarding honouring Mudukaki with a certificate of good service during their annual celebrations in Kamuli district on Thursday last week, nurses hailed her for her strictness on the essence of service above self.  

Mudukaki told journalists that all the students placed under her supervision at Mulago National Referral Hospital often referred to her as "Hitler," because of her strict enforcement of professional ethics.  

"We are called sisters because of the love we extend to patients during their recovery process. Therefore, since I insisted on such values, some students resorted to name-calling me instead and a bigger section of them often referred to me as Hitler," she said. 

Mudukaki noted with concern the current supervision gaps, which she said have contributed to the graduation of poor quality nurses with limited compassion for their patients. She explains that in their days, they used to make juice for their patients and watch over them beyond their designated schedules, which is no longer the case.

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Jennifer Kakai, the retired assistant Mbale District Health Officer, said that Mudukaki offered her skills in selfless service, which largely contributed to the success of her career.

"Sister Mudukaki tipped us on ensuring our patient’s wellbeing above individual needs, an attribute which enabled me to excel throughout my nursing career," she said.

Sister Grace Ojilot, a retired public health nurse said that Mudukaki tipped them on the value of timekeeping, which allows nurses to effectively address their patient’s needs.

"When deployed at Sister Mudukaki's ward, timekeeping was a must as it enabled us to effectively interact with several patients and attend to their needs with ease," she says.

Mudukaki's daughter, Florence Musoke says despite retiring from active service about 30-years ago, her mother has continued to receive gifts from her former patients and colleagues expressing gratitude towards the above self-health care service she extended to them.  

Justus Cherop, the president of the Uganda Nurses and Midwives Union-UNMU challenged the government to provide a special budget aimed to enable the capacity building of nurses, which will help them to excel in their career paths just as their mentor, Mudukaki did.

According to the public service minister, Muruli Mukasa, the government is committed to ensuring the capacity building of nurses with modern skills to handle patients' needs amidst pandemics and other epidemics. 

Muruli notes that the government through the statehouse has already allocated 20 scholarships to nurses with the aim of furthering the education of specialized nurses from reputable institutions abroad.