“In 1969, I was posted to Kandang Kerbau Maternity Hospital as a Student Nurse.  One morning,  the rain suddenly turned into a torrential downpour. Within an hour, it started flooding.  From my room on the second floor of the nurses’ hostel, I saw a car arrive at the hospital’s Admission porch. It was a woman in labour! Then I witnessed a resourceful midwife helping the pregnant lady into a bathtub, and “floating” her into the Admission Room. How ingenious!

By noon, the flood waters had come up to waist level. I was trapped in my hostel room, but there was only one thing on my mind: I had to report for duty at 2.00pm, regardless of the flood. It is this “duty-first” mindset which has been so ingrained into the nurses’ psyche.   When we got to the wards, we saw that the flood waters had reached the bottom of the patients’ beds. But we went about our duties as normally as we could. I was pleasantly surprised when a man from the dining room floated our lunches over on an enamel tray. He even made multiple trips to ensure each hostel resident received lunch.
  My student nurse posting was very memorable indeed.”

Gin Cheng Yam
Deputy Director, Nursing
Singapore General Hospital

Tags: Nurse