09 March 2004

---Filipino Doctors and Nurses Abroad

"The only reason I know that doctors go back to school to be nurses and go to work in the US, is that it is easier to go and be employed as a nurse in the US compared to coming here as a doctor.

"A Filipino doctor who wants to work here in the US has to pass four national board exams while a Filipino nurse will be required to take only one state board exam.

"If you are a new doctor in the US taking residency, your take- home pay is only about $2,500 a month while a nurse takes home $5,000 a month.

"A doctor in the US goes to work 24 hours a day and is on call, while a nurse works for 8 hours only, the most 12 hours.

"A doctor has to be properly matched before being admitted to work in a hospital, while a nurse is being courted by several hospitals to work in their facilities.

"A doctor who wants to work in the US has to pay for everything just to come here while a nurse's expenses including his/her green card would be paid and processed by the sponsoring hospital.

"It will take three years for a doctor in the Philippines to process everything to work in the US while a nurse will only take a year.

"If you are to choose between being a nurse and a doctor in the US, what would you rather be? The answer is obvious. It's not about training. It's about opportunity, practicality, and convenience.

"Do you know that if all Filipino nurses here in the US would leave, the health care system here would collapse? "

(from Malaya 03-09-04, E. Tordesillas)

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