Higher pay eyed for private sector health workers
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello over the weekend said he asked the Department of Health to initiate before Congress a proposal upgrading the salaries of nurses and other medical workers in the private sector.
Michael Varcas/File
Higher pay eyed for private sector health workers
Mayen Jaymalin (The Philippine Star) - September 21, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) is pushing for an increase in the pay of healthcare workers (HCWs) in the private sector to encourage them to stay in the country and not seek employment abroad.

Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello over the weekend said he asked the Department of Health (DOH) to initiate before Congress a proposal upgrading the salaries of nurses and other medical workers in the private sector.

“That is why many nurses in the private sector are looking for overseas employment rather than stay because of the huge discrepancy in salary with those working in the public sector,” Bello said.

According to Bello, nurses in private hospitals work for a minimum of 10 to 12 hours a day and only get a monthly pay of P18,000, which is lower than what the nurses in public health facilities are getting.

There are also instances when nurses are the ones paying private hospitals a “training fee” so they could acquire the two-year experience required for overseas employment.

Bello said DOLE has been looking into the plight of nurses in private hospitals, but is unable to pursue cases in the absence of complainants.

“We know that those things are happening, but the problem is there is no complainant. We can talk to hospital owners and they will promise fair treatment, but those are just empty words,” Bello said.

He urged hospital owners not to exploit HCWs and for the latter to assert their rights.

DOH DOLE HEALTH WORKERS
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