Our nursing members and officers have contributed significantly to the progress and expansion of the St. John Ambulance movement since its pre-war days. Nursing members and officers were attached to the units even before the formation of Divisions and Corps. In the early days, nursing members were mainly given the responsibility of applying dressings to the wounded while ambulance members transported casualties to first aid stations.
Nursing members follow the same first aid and foot drill training as ambulance members. They must learn nursing procedures to care for the sick before they are qualified as members. In nursing procedures, members learn to attend to the sick and help them in daily routines such as taking meals and medication, and bed sponging. Members also must learn to communicate with patients besides exercising patience and understanding the patients’ needs.
Through the years, a lot of effort has been put in by officers to strengthen the nursing movement in Malaysia. The National Headquarters organised Nursing Seminars attended by officers from around the country to discuss the future of the nursing movement and to address issues faced by the members and
officers. The nursing officers under the leadership of Chief Superintendent (Nursing) Datin Saadiah Sardon and Puan Zubaidah bte Mohd. Said played active roles in drafting the nursing syllabus.
Today, the SJAM nursing movement has reached a new level. With the rising cost of health care and the increasing demand for hospital beds, early discharge and home care are now encouraged. People who care for sick relatives need continued help and support of health personnel. The new needs from the community spark new initiatives from our members and officers. Following the home nursing services initiated by SJAM Wilayah Persekutuan in 1995, SJAM set up nursing homes in Perak and Selangor. Such services allow our members and officers to continue applying their nursing knowledge in the service of the community.