To avert mass exodus, shortage
FOLLOWING President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s order for the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) to address the “mass exodus” of Filipino nurses to explore employment opportunities abroad, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri has doubled down on his stance that Filipino workers, nurses, included, are leaving the country due to insufficient wages.
“Small private hospitals here pay nurses as low as fifteen to twenty thousand pesos a month,” Zubiri stressed. “And they are likely overworked, looking after more than their fair share of patients as more and more of their colleagues leave for better pastures abroad.”
According to the Senate President, the salary that Filpino nurses are receiving is “far beyond” compared to other countries.
“Who can blame them for leaving? Overseas, they earn somewhere around P150,000 to P200,000 a month. Our salaries and benefits offer no competition,” Zubiri said.
According to the Department of Health (DOH), the country is presently dealing with a shortage of 350,000 nurses.
“If we want nurses to stay in the country, we need to increase their salaries. That is the really the long and short of the diaspora problem that we are having,” Zubiri suggested.
Zubiri said it is about time that our leaders think of a way to solve this problem as he further explained that most of these people would rather stay in their family than go abroad if only they have a choice.
“I have no doubt that our nurses want to stay here. They want to be with their families, and they want to help our people. But they need to make a decent living as well, and they need to be paid wages and benefits that are commensurate to the work that they render. If they do not get this, then they have no other choice but to leave,” Zubiri said.