Friday, April 27, 2012

Filipino Nurses Wanted

Dear insansapinas,

OOpps. This is not an advertisement. This is a blog about US Ambassador Cuisia's opinion on DC Counciman Barry's unfair statement about Fiipino nurses.
For a person who was admitted in the hospital four times in less than two years, let me discuss this issue on both sides. 
In fairness, this is the side of Barry: 
“[N]o offense,” Barry said, “but let’s grow our own teachers, let’s grow our own nurses, and so that we don’t have to go scrounging in our community clinics and other kinds of places, having to hire people from somewhere else.”
Barry said nursing schools in the district should train local residents to work in the health industry and deal with nursing shortages.
Even before he made the statement, he already asked for apology. His statements were more directed towards the hospital and healthcare industry challenging them to come up with a program that would address the shortage of nurses in the US. In the Philippines, can we accept the label of racism if we give preference to our local graduates than the foreigners?

Same is true here in the States. Unemployment is a problem. There are employment opportunities but no locals are trained for such kind of job. As I have said, I was admitted in the hospital four times and in these times, there were not so many locals who graduated from the nursing program. What Barry may not realize is  that this is not the kind of profession or career that is desired by the local residents. What they may want are something that are in the mainstream like computer; something which can give them fast bucks with little investments. It is very expensive to study nursing in the US and second, it involves lives of people which is a big responsibility for people who want easy, risk free living. I wrote in one of my hospital admissions about a local  RN graduate  who could not even put the IV back to my arm. It took a Filipina nursing aide to do it.

In my second admission, I observed a  very much in demand nursing assistant among the patients because of his dedication and industry. Guess who he is. He is a Filipino. And yesterday, as I have written in my blog, I met another Filipino who is tidy looking among those whose uniforms need a little tender care from the laundry and iron. That's what makes us different from others. 

Compared to California where you can not walk another square meter without bumping into one Filipino is the number of nurses employed in DC area. The ratio is one Filipina nurse for every ten. The low ratio is not only because of preference in hiring. It is also the weather. Filipinos prefer California climate. No ice, consistent cold weather especially in the Bay Area.Here in the East Coast, snow makes it difficult for many of the Filipinas to commute especially those who are assigned in the graveyard shift where there are no available transportations.

Masyado na yata tayong onion-skinned.


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