Sigma is proud to welcome the Alpha Alpha Beta Chapter at Genoa University to the family— this is the first Sigma chapter in Italy! The chapter’s induction was originally scheduled for 10 May 2020, but because of COVID-19, an in-person induction has been delayed. That hasn’t stopped them from moving forward with plans for the future, though.
This first Sigma chapter in Italy will encourage research initiatives and future events that will enable a study and analysis of the experiences lived by nurses and patients during this pandemic. The chapter is launching a qualitative research study aimed at investigating how nurses perceive the COVID-19 emergency and has submitted an editorial to an international journal describing what happened to Italian nurses on the frontlines.
Members of Alpha Alpha Beta Chapter are especially concerned about how nurses will move forward after the pandemic, but the chapter is prepared to be a community of support. Their nurses have been present during the end-of-life phase of countless COVID-19 patients, who were isolated from their loved ones. This isolation created a strong emotional burden that the chapter knows will have to be properly addressed. Additionally, nurses bravely continued to stay close to their patients, even when PPE was not available. This has led to a high number of infections and deaths among nurses that cannot be forgotten. The chapter is determined to help nurses manage their unmet needs related to this plight before it negatively affects nurses from a psychological and social point of view.
In Italy, views on nursing as a profession vary, and Alpha Alpha Beta Chapter leaders look forward to the positive role the chapter will play in increasing the public perception of nurses. They’re confident that their work will continue to aid their community in recognizing the vital role nurses play in the healthcare system.
In general, Italy suffers from a lack of research funds in the nursing field, which means that it forces researchers to go abroad. For instance, a recent call to fund research proposals by the Italian Ministry of Health focused on research projects that aimed at improving clinical care during the COVID-19 emergency. But it actually excluded nurses from being principal investigators on the basis of eligibility criteria that required an H-index of at least 30, totally ignoring the criteria required for academic positions for each discipline. Alpha Alpha Beta Chapter now being an active part of the global Sigma network will help to attract more promoters and collaboration for new and innovative nursing research projects.
Welcome to the Sigma family, Alpha Alpha Beta Chapter!