Nursing Conference 2018
Annual General Meeting
College of Nursing, Hong Kong
Nurses : A Voice to Lead,
Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals –
Good Health & Well-being
Opening Remarks by the Secretary for Food and Health
Ms (Ellen) KU, distinguished guests, friends and colleagues, ladies and
Good morning. It is my
great pleasure to be here today at the Opening Ceremony of the Nursing
Conference 2018 organised by the College of Nursing, Hong Kong.
The theme of this Conference, “Nurses: A Voice to Lead, Achieving the
Sustainable Development Goals- Good Health and Well-being”, is most relevant
to us in the midst of the challenges we are facing in our healthcare system.
Similar to other advanced economies in the world, the population of
Hong Kong is ageing rapidly. The
median age of Hong Kong was increased from 36.8 in 2001 to 41.7 in 2011 and
is expected to rise to 45 in 2021.
Life expectancy is on the rise too.
For male, the figure is expected to increase from 78.4 in 2001 to
82.2 in 2021. For female, the
increase will be from 84.6 in 2001 to 88.5 twenty years later.
Reading the two pieces of information together, the demand for
healthcare services is clearly on the rise.
The rising demand for healthcare services and the changing healthcare
needs from an ageing population are the drivers for the reform of healthcare
policies, models of care delivery, as well as the roles and scopes of
practice of individual healthcare professions.
In a word, we need a healthcare system which supports our people to
live long and live healthy.
In face of these challenges, the Government endeavors to ensure the
quality and sustainability of Hong Kong’s healthcare services by devoting
effort and allocating resources in an efficient and focused manner.
As announced by the Chief Executive in the 2017 Policy Address, we
pledge to enhance our public healthcare infrastructure, promote
district-level primary healthcare services, enhance public health
regulation, promote enhancements in medical technology and proactively
support the development of Chinese medicine for better outcomes to our
As far as healthcare manpower is concerned, the Government recognizes
nurses as an irreplaceable part of our medical profession.
We will continue allocating resources to ensure that our nurses are
maintaining top standards and always keep abreast with the latest medical
advancement and nursing practices.
The Hospital Authority will also set up more nurse clinics and enhance the
services of the existing ones in particular in urology and rheumatology, and
expand perioperative nurse clinics so as to facilitate patients’ early
access to treatment and continuity of care.
The proposed improved service model through nurse clinics is a
patient-centred model which focuses on the needs of individual in the
continuum of specialist care, and puts emphasis on access and effective
intervention of problems in a timely manner.
Nurses, together with doctors and allied health professions such as
physiotherapists, occupational therapists and pharmacists are involved in
delivering care throughout the patient care journey.
Equally important, the Government also recognises the pivotal role
played by nurses in revitalising healthcare systems through advanced nursing
practice and enhanced clinical specialties.
Specialisation in nursing is an important milestone in the
professionalisation of the nursing profession.
I am very glad to see that we are making progress on specialisation
of nursing practice vide the task force set up by the Food and Health Bureau
to map out the way forward with the ultimate goal of putting in place a
legal framework on nursing specialisation in the long run.
This will certainly benefit our healthcare system with more skilled
and experienced nurses to serve our patients in various specialised areas.
Ladies and gentlemen, it has taken us years of rigorous training,
continuous specialised education, and self-betterment to build up a strong
cadre of nursing leaders who are not only well-versed in nursing skills but
also capable of charting out improvements of our healthcare delivery through
working closely with professionals from various medical disciplines.
In this connection, the College has made substantial contributions to
our nursing profession, especially in nurturing nursing leaders and
developing continuing professional education for the nursing community. I am
confident that with the College’s support, our nurses will continue to
strive for clinical excellence and high-quality patient care.
Looking ahead, we will continue to count on our nursing community and
dedicated institutions like the College of Nursing, Hong Kong to work
together for the overall wellness of the city by taking forward the
healthcare initiatives in the pipeline.
As the Secretary for Food and Health, to safeguard public health,
provide quality medical services, ensure food safety and environmental
hygiene will be top priorities on my health agenda.
My team and I will continue to work hard for the betterment of Hong
10. Last not but least, I would like to extend my warmest
congratulations to the College of Nursing, Hong Kong on its
55th Anniversary and wish the College continued
success in its future endeavors.
To all the Conference participants, I wish you all an
inspiring and fruitful exchange.