Go files bill to improve nursing education in Philippines

July 19, 2019
Bong Go
SENATOR ‘Bong’ Go readily joins doctors and nurses of a public hospital for a picture taking after the opening of a Malasakit Center.

CITING the need to elevate the status of the country as a producer of leaders, experts, and authorities in the field of medicine particularly nursing, Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go filed a bill amending the Philippine Nursing Act of 2002 in the Senate on Tuesday, July 9.

Senate Bill No. 395, also known as the “Advanced Nursing Education Act of 2019”, seeks to protect and improve the nursing profession by instituting measures that will result in relevant nursing education, humane working conditions, better career prospects and a dignified existence for our nurses.

Go mentioned that some current nursing programs in the country put emphasis on deploying Filipino nurses abroad, which compelled him to work on the proposed measure to encourage these health workers to render their service in the country instead.

“Naka-focus masyado ang ibang kasalukuyang programa sa pangingibang bansa ng mga nurses natin. Gusto kong maisama ang community integration and immersion sa kanilang mga curriculum upang mahikayat naman natin silang magtrabaho sa mga pamayanan dito sa Pilipinas,” Go said in an interview.

Go’s proposed measure will require the establishment of standard basic and graduate programs for nursing education, to be established in Commission on Higher Education (CHED)-accredited institutions of higher learning.

Under the basic program, students will be mandated to undergo community integration and immersion to encourage them to work in various communities.

Meanwhile, a graduate program will be built on the experiences and skills of the nurses towards mastery, expertise and leadership in practice, research and education.

The faculty-to-student ratio will also be in accordance with the standard to be determined by CHED.

A National Nursing Admission Test (NNAT) also needs to be hurdled by aspiring nurses in order to ensure the quality of students getting into the program.

The Advanced Nursing Education Act is just one among several bills Go filed this month that seek to improve healthcare in the country and the protection of professionals in the public health system.

Go is a known advocate of improving health care access in the country and the promotion of rights of healthcare professionals.

During his speech at the 86th National Annual Convention of the Philippine Public Health Association, Inc., Go assured public health professionals, including nurses, that he will promote their welfare by pushing for measures that will benefit them including the increase of salary of public health professionals and other civilian government workers.

Go earlier filed SB 200 or An Act Modifying the Salary Schedule for Civilian Government Personnel. This bill seeks to increase the salary of civilian government personnel including nurses serving in public institutions.

The former Special Assistant to the President has filed this bill to champion the passage of a new version of the Salary Standardization Law. SB200 seeks to increase the salaries of all government workers by modifying the existing Compensation and Position Classification System, making it more attractive and competitive in order to retain and motivate those in government service.  

“Dagdagan natin ang suweldo ng mga ordinaryong kawani ng gobyerno, kasama na dyan ang mga guro at nurses. Dapat holistic ang approach natin upang lahat ng mga kawani sa gobyerno ay makapaglingkod nang maayos at magampanan ang kanilang tungkulin sa bayan,” he said.