With employment opportunities for over 300,00 unemployed or underemployed Filipino nurses continue to dwindle significantly, Dr. Josefina Tuazon, a former dean of UP College of Nursing and now a member Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Technical Committee on Nursing Education, has advised incoming college freshmen to take Nursing for the right reason and if possible, choose other college courses that perfectly fit both their skills and interests.
“If they want to take up nursing because they think they have the aptitude and inclination to become a nurse, irrespective of going abroad, irrespective of earning dollars, then go. We need nurses like that. In other words – take nursing for the right reason,” she said during an interview. “If you are using nursing as a stepping stone to go abroad, then don’t take up nursing because this is not the right time. Employments are not going to be readily available and more importantly, in this profession, we don’t need people doing that.”
The sudden boom in demands for skilled nursing professionals abroad some 8 to 10 years ago has led to the mushrooming of substandard nursing schools in the Philippines, and with this phenomenon also comes the continuous degradation of nursing education which only puts the Nursing course at the center of public spotlight. American dream for Filipino nurses has also taken a back seat as U.S.A. is still suffering from retrogression which also affects even its local nursing graduates. For this reason, Tuazon firmly agrees that this is not the best time for students to consider Nursing as the stepping-stone to work abroad because they might just end up frustrated just like the other 300, 00 or more Filipino nurses who are still groping in the dark.
“What made nursing different – the reason the reputation was good – prior to this trend? Before, only those who had the inclination took up nursing. But now, there are students who were even forced to take up nursing to help in the family. That is not exactly the right characteristic, the right attitude, the right mindset for nurses to give (the) nursing (profession) a good name abroad or anywhere else,” she maintained.
Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz, on the other hand, urges Filipino nurses to look outside the box and search other medical-related jobs outside teh hospital setting.
“With the fast-growing and innovative trends and advancements in the healthcare industry, I encourage you to go out-of-the-box, beyond the traditional clinical jobs, and explore other emerging medical and health-related careers that are needed by our labor market today,” she said.
Healthcare information outsourcing sector of the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry, for example, is now one of the “fast-growing sectors” that offer over 100,000 medical-related jobs to nursing graduates. According to Baldoz, Nursing graduates can also consider working as clinical research associates who monitor and administer health and safety protocols and related study training to assigned work sites.
“If they are into clinical review and decision making, they may consider a career as a Clinical Appeals Specialist who abstracts clinically relevant facts documented in the patient’s medical record, reviews clinical cases and responds to written medical appeals of patients and clients,” Baldoz added.
Sources: Yahoo News