Monday, January 17, 2011

Aquino urged to stop ‘exploitation’ of nurses in hospitals

Militant lawmakers on Monday urged President Benigno Aquino III to order hospitals in the country to stop charging trainee nurses with “exorbitant" fees for volunteer work.

Rep. Emerenciana de Jesus of women’s party-list group Gabriela said Aquino has the power to halt these fees, which she described as “exploitative" for the country’s registered nurses.

Mabigat talaga ito para sa kanila, lalo na kung libu-libo ang sinisingil. He (President Aquino) can order to halt these fees, especially on registered nurses who have already passed the board exams," she told GMANews.TV in an interview.

De Jesus described as “bothersome" how the government supposedly tolerated the practice of hospitals charging nurses fees — ranging from P5,000 to P7,000 — for their volunteer work for years. 

The Senate started its investigation on the alleged exploitation last week.

House wants own probe

Kabataan party-list Rep. Raymond Palatino, meanwhile, filed a resolution asking the House committee on higher and technical education, as well as the committee on labor and employment, to conduct a separate investigation.

Palatino said the alleged exploitation of trainee nurses can have a “bad effect" on state of health care in the country.

“These hospitals are exploiting the oversupply of nurses sa pagpapataw nila ngexorbitant fees na ito. Maaaring makaapekto ito sa maging makasama sa health caredito sa bansa," he said at a press conference.

He said aside from stopping these exorbitant fees, the government should also review the state of nursing education to address the oversupply of nurses in the country. - Andreo Calonzo/KBK, GMANews.TV

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