By Melati Mohd. Ariff (Bernama)
KUALA LUMPUR: Aware of the rising need for Islamic home-based nursing care, the Bandar Baru Bangi-based MN Al Falah (Al Falah) has moved to offer services that cover home care.
The mover behind Al Falah, Dr Norshinah Kamarudin, said the suggestion to venture into this sector originated from a close friend.
Dr Norshinah's friend, who has a strong business acumen, sees the potential behind this industry, particularly in urban areas.
She said there were many cases where home-based nursing care was required for elderly parents, as most urban dwellers were busy with their jobs.
"This is the opportunity that we notice and in terms of logistics we ease the hassle of having to bring the patients for treatment at the hospital," she told Bernama at the Al Falah office.
Dr Norshinah has 30 years' experience in the field of Medicine; and with assistance from her close friend, she set up MN Al Falah in January 2010.
Despite being new in the industry, Al Falah, led by Dr Norshinah and her business partner Siti Azifah Mohamed, has managed to make inroads. Siti Azifah has wide experience in paediatric nursing.
Al Falah, which means success, focuses on exclusive and professional home-based nursing care.
"As directors of Al Falah we have injected value-added services, as I am a medical expert while Siti Azifah is in nursing. This helps us to be more competent in providing our services.
"This way the patients and nurses are able to get direct consultations from both of us," noted Dr Norshinah.
She said Al Falah plans to expand abroad, particularly to neighbouring countries.
"There are many patient-care agencies but most focus on physical health and needs alone," said Dr Norshinah, who retired from government service in 2007.
She also operates a clinic at the Prince Court Medical Centre here.
Apart from being the chairman and managing director of Al Falah, she handles the marketing and goes into the field to interview nurses who want to work for Al Falah.
Al Falah uses a holistic approach that covers the physical, emotional and spiritual well-being of patients.
"What we offer is to meet the needs of patients after they are discharged from hospital," said Dr Norshinah.
For Muslim patients receiving Al Falah's services, they will also have available to them a spiritual approach from the attending doctors and nurses to help assure their speedy recovery.
Al Falah provides Muslim patients with a book on prayers. The nurses attending to Muslim patients will also perform the zikir, apart from asking to join them in the zikir.
Additionally, patients will be advised on how to perform their religious obligations when they are ill.
"For non-Muslim patients, our nursing care will focus on the physical and psychosocial aspect," said Dr. Norshinah.
Eighty per cent of the nurses employed by Al Falah are Muslims and from the total number of nursing staff, 20 per cent are men.
Al Falah also provides physiotherapy and counselling services.
Apart from the Klang Valley, Al Falah is available in Balik Pulau, Ipoh, Kota Bharu, Seremban, Johor Baru and Muar. Its hotline is 012-2526499.
Dr. Norshinah said the length and duration of care depends on a patients' needs.
There are cases that need round-the-clock care and there are cases where a nurse is only required to replace a patient's feeding tubes. In other cases patients only need nurses to bathe and feed them.
As an example, Dr Norshinah cited a case where the family wanted all the comforts for a terminally ill patient at home. In this case Al Falah arranged for nurses to work in shifts to attend to the patient, just like in a hospital.
"All the required equipment was provided, just like that in a hospital room. We also provided a doctor and a physiotherapist," said Dr Norshinah.
Despite her tight schedule, Dr Norshinah manages to find time for volunteer work.
She has been a volunteer with Aman Malaysia since 2005 and is now involved with volunteer work with the Yayasan Felda . She was also a volunteer during the massive floods that hit Kota Tinggi and Batu Pahat.
She also tries to fulfil her social obligations, such as visiting welfare homes and homes for delinquents. -- Bernama
By Melati Mohd. Ariff (Bernama)
Thursday, October 20, 2011