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Labatt to help nurses, midwives look for better jobs

14 May 2016

By Daisy CL Mandap

Labor Attache Jalilo de la Torre is set to meet with registered nurses and midwives in Hong Kong this Sunday, May 15, to help them identify “alternative employment and reintegration options” back in the Philippines.
Labatt de la Torre said the move is in line with the government’s effort to get as many Filipino professionals working overseas to fill up positions that are available back home, or to go somewhere else where they can practice their profession, and get better pay.
Currently, Germany is recruiting Filipino nurses and other health professionals under a special no-placement fee arrangement with the Philippine government.
More recently, Saudi Arabia’s health ministry issued a notice through the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), of its urgent need for 400 female nurses for the King Saud Medical City in Riyadh.
Nurses’ leader Lorna Pagaduan and Brenda Atrero, president of the Integrated Midwives Association of the Philippines – Hong Kong, both welcomed the initiative.
“That is the reason we are conducting a signature campaign for the midwifery board examination to be held here again,” said Atrero. “Many of our members have managed to move on to other countries for better paying jobs, or back to the Philippines, after passing the exam.”
She said their counterpart group in the Philippines has told them that at least 50 examinees are needed for the licensure exam to be held in Hong Kong. As there are only about 15 IMAP-HK members who are still under board, she has enlisted the help of the Consulate and other groups like The SUN to get more midwifery graduates to sign up for the campaign.
Pagaduan is also hopeful of having another nursing licensure examination to be held in Hong Kong, despite her group’s dismal performance in the first such qualifying test held here in 2009.
That year, licensure exams were held separately for nursing and midwifery graduates working as domestic helpers in Hong Kong. While half of the 28 midwifery examinees passed, only 2 of the 90 nursing examinees made the mark.
Pagaduan has attributed the OFW examinees’ low passing rate to time constraints and the lack of exposure to current nursing trends.
Both groups hope to do better in the next round, with help from the government in preparing their members for the examination.
The Department of Labor and Employment, through its National Reintegration Center where Labatt de la Torre used to be connected, is currently working on getting as many 300 teachers abroad, to go home and teach. The main attraction is the Php18,000 monthly salary offered to first-time teachers in the Philippines, which is higher than what most OFWs make, although slightly less than what is paid to those working in Hong Kong.
So far, only 10 have taken up the offer under the “Sa Pinas, Ikaw ang Ma’am/Sir”, and all were from Hong Kong.
Those who want to join the meeting with Labatt de la Torre may go to the POLO office at Admiralty Tower 1, 11th Floor this Sunday, May 15. The meeting with the midwives will take place at 3pm, and 4pm for the nurses.

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