SENATOR Sonny Angara on Tuesday urged the Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) to consider putting up satellite venues for its licensure examinations scheduled for this year as a way to help aspiring doctors, nurses, policemen, teachers and other professionals with financial and mobility issues during this pandemic.
Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, Angara noted that travel across borders has become very challenging because of quarantine restrictions imposed by local government units.
Many families have also been affected financially due to business closures, suspension of operations or layoffs due to cost cutting.
Licensure examinations are held at the regional offices of the PRC and for many of those who will take the exam, this means travelling long distances from their home provinces. Apart from the cost of transportation, they will also have to look for accommodations and because of the pandemic, undergo COVID-19 testing.
“All of these add up and may prove to be prohibitive to many families. Ayaw naman natin na may mga graduate tayo na hindi matuloy sa kanilang PRC exam dahil sa laki ng kailangan gastusin sa panahon na ito,” Angara said.
The chairman of the Committee on Finance said the PRC can consider establishing satellite testing venues in provinces where there are over 100 examinees.
“LGUs can support the program by providing the venues for the exams and the personnel needed for this purpose. The PRC can just provide the necessary training for these personnel. By doing this, the cost should not be too much on the part of the government,” Angara said.
“During this time we need more doctors, nurses, policemen, and with the possible reopening of face-to-face classes soon, teachers, so we should find ways to increase their numbers,” Angara said.
The licensure exam for teachers and doctors are scheduled for September; nurses in November, and criminologists in December.
“If we can produce more of our frontliners during this pandemic then we should find ways to make this happen. Setting up satellite exam venues is one small way we can help in this effort,” Angara said.