UAE: Young Emirati stroke unit nurse shares her career story, goals

Even though the rising talent is currently excelling at work, it was not a career choice her parents initially approved of


Ashwani Kumar

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Top Stories

Photos: Supplied
Photos: Supplied

Published: Sat 11 May 2024, 5:54 PM

Last updated: Sat 11 May 2024, 8:57 PM

Mubarka Nasser Al Karbi, a young Emirati nurse in the stroke unit at one of the largest hospitals for serious and complex care in the UAE, noted that nursing is a “challenging yet rewarding” job.

The 24-year-old staff nurse in the stroke unit at Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Shakhbout Medical City (SSMC) – a member of the Pure Health network, has witnessed first-hand the profound impact her role can have on patients’ lives.

“I have been always interested in neurology during my bachelor studies. Working in the stroke unit helped me so much in shaping me as a person. It’s a challenging experience yet rewarding to help patients recover and improve their quality of life after having a stroke," Al Karbi told Khaleej Times, marking International Nurses Day, which falls on May 12.

"Dealing with patients suffering from stroke can be intense due to the critical nature of their conditions, but it can be fulfilling knowing that we are making a difference in their lives,” she added.

Stay up to date with the latest news. Follow KT on WhatsApp Channels.

In her 16 months of service in the stroke unit, she has witnessed several unforgettable moments.

“One of the moments I will never forget is when I saw one of my patients, a 20-year-old, who has been suffering from a neurological condition called acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM), walking, talking and laughing again. When he came to us, he was unable to move his limbs or even talk or eat," Al Karbi said.

"With extensive treatment and physiotherapy, he was able to return to his normal self after three months. He was smiling from the bottom of his heart and thanking us for all the work we did to help him. This is one of the reasons why I love my job. You see the progress that you made pays off,” she added.

Even though the rising talent is currently excelling at work, it was not a career choice her parents initially approved of.

“At first, they were hesitant about it. They know how hard it is to work in the hospital, but they saw how passionate I am about it and that I would do anything to be a nurse and they agreed. Every time I see them, they say how proud they are of me for helping people and this makes me so happy.”

When asked where she sees herself five years from now, Al Karbi said: “I would have finished my master's and PhD specialised in neurology or emergency nursing. I would be a stroke coordinator in a specialised acute stroke unit and a clinical resource nurse that shares the knowledge and expertise with the future generations of nurses.”

Al Karbi is confident that more Emiratis will be joining the nursing profession.

“Yes, of course. If you ask this question 10 years ago it was rare or impossible to see Emiratis working as nurses. Now there is more awareness and Emiratis are starting to see nursing as a profession.”

Five ways to draw Emirati talents

Asked what steps can be taken to accelerate the process of getting more Emiratis to join nursing, Al Karbi counted five key measures:

  1. Holding awareness campaigns that highlight the importance and value of nursing as a profession; showcasing the success stories of Emirati nurses, and addressing the misconceptions about nursing
  2. Organising education and training programmes that encourage Emiratis to pursue nursing education
  3. Engaging the local communities to promote nursing as a viable and respected career choice; collaborating with schools and universities to raise awareness and support
  4. Offering financial benefits and incentives to attract Emiratis to the nursing profession
  5. Increasing the visibility of Emirati nurses in leadership positions; serving as a role model and advocating for the future generation of Emirati nurses


More news from UAE