Tuesday, May 17, 2011

GABRIELA Solon to DOH: Nurses Play Key Role in the National Health System

Rep. Emmi De Jesus

Article from GABRIELA Women's Party 
Saturday, 14 May 2011 

Rep. Emmi De Jesus chastised DOH Secretary Enrique Ona for downplaying the need for nurses and discouraging future students from taking up nursing as a course.

“Nurses should not be viewed solely as commodities in the government's labor export policy. There may be a downsizing in the demand for nurses from countries that have traditionally required them, but the local health system continues to be in dire need of their services. We visited Fabella Hospital to celebrate Mother's Day with the women who gave birth there, and were informed that they are very much understaffed given that on a regular day, they render service to at least sixty mothers giving birth each day. The World Health Organization recommends an ideal nursing professional to patient ratio of 1:10, but the actual current ratio is 1 nurse for every 16,000 Filipinos."

This was the statement of Gabriela Women’s Party Rep. Emmi De Jesus in reaction to Secretary Ona's advise to incoming college students to avoid nursing.

"Health Secretary Ona should first concern himself in securing an adequate budget to allow the public health system to absorb all these highly qualified but unemployed health professionals as this is an important foundation of a quality health system. He should urge the Department of Budget to increase the budget for public hospitals to purchase much needed laboratory equipments necessary for research and health care delivery, increase the salaries of our health professionals and provide for their continuing training,” Rep. De Jesus added.

“I also challenge the Aquino Administration to develop a career plan for future college students that is responsive to the needs of the bigger population of marginalized Filipinos, instead of viewing education from a narrow perspective of an investment to secure a high paying job," ended De Jesus.

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