Monday, April 30, 2012

Filipino nurses taking US licensing test declining


Source : Manila Standard
ONLY 863 Philippine-educated nurses took the US professional licensing test for the first time in the first quarter this year, down 40 percent from the 1,454 who took that test for the first time in the same quarter in 2011, Rep. Arnel Ty said Monday.
“The number also represents only 17 percent of the 5,076 Filipino nurses who took the [test] for the first time in the first quarter of 2007—at the height of the nursing boom,” Ty said.
The number of Filipino nurses taking the US test for the first time, excluding repeaters, was considered a good indicator as to how many of them are trying to practice their profession in America, Ty said.
He joined Vice President Jejomar Binay in denouncing Washington, DC Council member Marion Barry Jr.’s discriminating and racist remarks against Filipino nurses working in the US.
“Mr. Barry’s offensive remarks were totally uncalled for, especially coming from a US Democratic Party member closely identified with the American civil rights movement against racial segregation and discrimination,” Ty said.
“Filipino nurses provide a great service to America. They should immediately make their presence felt by writing directly to Barry and his colleagues in the US capital’s lawmaking-body.”
In a recent DC Council budget hearing, Barry said: “It’s so bad that if you go to the hospital now, you find a number of immigrants who are nurses, particularly from the Philippines. Let’s grow from our own nurses, so that we don’t have to be scrounging around in our community clinics and other kinds of places, having to hire people from somewhere else.”
It is estimated that some 116,000 Filipino nurses have obtained employment in American hospitals, clinics and nursing homes since 1995, according to Ty.
But he said the number of Filipino nurses seeking to practice their profession in America had been declining since 2009.
In the 12 months of 2011, only 5,630 Filipino nurses took the US test for the first time. That represents roughly one-fourth of the 21,499 Philippine-schooled nurses who took the US licensing exam in the 12 months of 2007.

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