Who would put themselves in the hands of a doctor or nurse who has never done an internship? The Spanish regional authorities are faced with a dilemma: to allow or not to allow medical and nursing students to carry out internships at a very delicate moment of the epidemic.
The regional governments of Madrid and Murcia, for the moment have decided to delay the practices and for this reason, Medicine and Nursing students from all over Spain have staged a virtual demonstration with the label # NoSinMisPrácticas.
Internships in hospitals are necessary to cover your curriculum according to international regulations.
Students fear that the suspensions decreed in Madrid and Murcia will last forever and end in annulment.
“We do not conceive that it will be lost all year, we do not believe that it is strategic neither for us, as future professionals, nor for the Health system. In the end it would be to lose a generation of doctors and nurses that the system cannot afford in these moments “, Antonio Pujol de Castro, president of the State Council of Medical Students (CEEM), one of the organizers of the mobilization together with the organization of nursing students, tells euronews.
In March, with the confinement and the state of alarm, all the students who were doing internships in hospitals were expelled and now in September they had to resume.
The Ministry of Health of the Community of Madrid sent a letter to the rectors of the Madrid universities announcing that the start of the practices was delayed while working to implement a protocol so that they can be carried out safely “as soon as possible” , a period that in principle would be two weeks.
In Murcia, the practices have been delayed without a date and the students fear that they will not be carried out. The Health Minister stated that it posed a risk to students and their families and to patients. The students affirm that it is nonsense since in a year they will be the professionals who will have to treat the patients.
The students, summoned during the peak of the pandemic
Above all, students fear that other regional governments, overwhelmed with the management of the Covid-19 pandemic, will decide to follow the example of Madrid and Murcia.
Pujol de Castro explains that health sciences are eminently practical disciplines: “we have to see a patient, to know how to handle the coronavirus, to know how to protect ourselves because next year we are going to see our own patients. We cannot lose a year deformation”.
Although two weeks – in the case of Madrid – may seem like a reasonable period in the middle of the pandemic, Antonio Pujol de Castro said that the authorities had time to prepare for the arrival of the students and wonder why the suspensions are now coming. “They have had a lot of time, more than six months, to prepare for this moment that they knew would come, in September, with the incorporation of students and the incorporation of residents,” explains the president of the CEEM, who recalls that during the At the peak of the pandemic, many seniors flocked to help health centers. “It was a very stressful situation for which they were not prepared. That is why we believe that the most important thing is that students are as prepared as possible in these cases to be able to help in the best way.
In other regions, such as Castilla León or Castilla la Mancha, the practices are being carried out, they simply carry out PCR tests on the students, he explains.
“In March, with the confinement, the professors substituted the practices with alternatives to save the course without being in a care environment. Online courses, drills, work were done … but that cannot replace our clinical practice,” says Pujol de Castro.
Faced with the prospect of a possible suspension without a date or that other regions follow the same path, nursing and medical student organizations, rectors and professional organizations have organized to send joint communications to the central and regional governments and have called a ” virtual demonstration “this Tuesday, which in a few minutes has become the most discussed topic in Spain on social networks such as Twitter with the label # NoSinMisPrácticas.