The Nursing Law for the Better Condition in Health Service and Nurse Professionalism*
by Rani Setiani Sujana
Nursing was the medical profession that patients most closely related to and an integral part of the medical field, but it lacked of a clear and formal legal platform. Indonesia is one of the three countries in ASEAN that do not have the nursing law yet. There are several reasons why nursing law is really important and have to be legitimated and issued by the government in Indonesia.
The first is the philosophy reason. The nurses have given the great contribution in increasing the public health status. The nurses give the health service in the government institution and the private institution to the people both in the big city and the small village. Even in the rural area of the town, the nurses keep their dedication to give the health service to the people. The nurses also have the science competency, rational act, ethic and professionalism, discipline, creativity and patient when help the client.
The second reason is judicial reason. On the Indonesia health law number 23 1992: paschal 32, explicitly said that the using of medication and treatment based on the medicine science and nursing science can only used by the health service provider or nursing service provider which expert and have the power to do that. It also said that the health practitioner have the right to do their job with the law protection. In addition, the health practitioners also have to do their job by obeying the professionalism standard. But, ironically, the nurses tend to be the object of law.
The last but not least is the sociological reason. The needed of the public health service has increased particularly the nursing service. This evidence shows that the public needs the health service that can be reached for all of the people, has the good quality, and has the law protection in providing the health service.
Based on the nursing law, the nursing council can handle all the aspect that needed by the people and the nursing profession in giving the health service. For the nursing students, the law can make the increasing in student competency because the nursing council will regulate the education system for nursing student. The nursing council will determine the most appropriate system in learning based on the needed of health service as the public expect to.
For the public, the law is urgently needed to protect people from illegal nursing practices, as well as to restate the job description of nurses. People are assured of their right to safe and effective medical treatment.
The law on nursing is mostly important for the nurses in our country. As we know that Indonesia is one of the three countries in ASEAN that have not the nursing law yet. This makes the nurses from our country have the difficulty to reach the global competition. The United States has recruited one million nurses until 2012, the United Kingdom recruits 20.000/year, and Canada 78.000 registered nurses until 2011. Meanwhile, in our country the recruited is less. The nurses in our country have the difficulty in developing their nursing career. They have to be the registered nurse but it is not easy for them to be the registered nurse because they have to ask the Malaysian, Singapore or Australian government that already has the Nursing Board. The mechanism and the procedure are not easy because of the international recognition of the Indonesian nurses. They do not trust to our nurses’ competency. Ironically, there are so many country need a lot number of nurses but there is no institution which warrant the nurse’s competency and help them to develop their competency in global competition.
In conclusion, it is time for us to have a law on nursing so the tasks and functions of nurses who are engaged directly with patients become clearer. This is the time for Indonesia to be recognized having the competent nurses, which can compete in the global competition.
*) This is dedicated for all of nurses in Indonesia, I wrote this essay when I participate in English oration competition in my campus.