01 September 2006

No Retake?

By now you must already be familiar with the nursing test leakage that has been the subject of most news reports. The latest report is that the PRC has sided with most of the examinees, and that a NO RETAKE stand has been reached.

There was a time when young people aspired to become doctors and nurses because they wanted to help and care for those who are sick. I can still remember my medical school interview when I was asked why I wanted to become a doctor, and while I answered the often-repeated "I wanted to serve," I remember that I meant it, and would remain so until I probably could not walk anymore.

These days, objectives have evolved --- or devolved, depending on how you perceive it. Most young people want to become nurses (not doctors, as doctors are already shifting to nursing also), because they see it as the best way they can get out of the country to earn more money for their families. Priorities have shifted as well. The number one reason now is to earn money and more money. Service and caring for the sick are still priorities probably, but they have fallen below the list down to #2 or #3. Even parents urge their little children to study hard, and become a nurse one day to help in augmenting family finances. Since 1994, more than 100,000 nurses have left the country to work abroad. Is Nursing really their first choice for a career? I think not......but they have chosen to, out of obvious necessity and pleas from immediate relatives to help the family.

If you review my archives on posts dealing with topics like these, you know I have nothing against earning money for a job well done. I also have nothing against working abroad. For a similar hospital procedure or teaching task, a doctor, nurse, or teacher definitely earns more than quadruple of what they can earn here in a month. Who wouldn't want getting more salary for the same service rendered?

But if you analyze and think it over, you will see that this objective shift from something selfless (to help and care) to doing a business investment (study hard now, earn a lot later) can explain why most nursing examinees would prefer NOT to have that exam retake anymore. Their parents, relatives, teachers, and lately, even the authorities (PRC, DOH, MalacaƱang) share the same opinion. Never mind if we miss the NCLEX opprtunity this year. Never mind if cheating really did occur. Never mind if there is now a so-called "stigma of cheating" haunting the nursing batch of 2006. Also, majority of the examinees did not cheat. Why will they be made to suffer for the sins of a handful of losers? What matters more is that the examinees can get their nursing license ASAP, leave the country, work abroad, earn more money, and help their families here. Of course, the government likes that too. The US$-Peso exchange wouldn't be P50.80 today if it were not for overseas remittances, right?

Integrity and honor takes a backseat when you are hungry. What will one do with honor and integrity when one is already dead from starvation?

But there are a few who are hungry and still strive for integrity and honor. They want a retake. But it is unfortunate because I do not think that will happen.

15 reactions:

xingkit said...

sad, but true...

Sidney said...

I will be honest. If I had taken this exam (and I didn't cheated) and passed the test I wouldn't want a retake. Image the risks. What if I would not pass the second time around? Imagine the stress. It would be foolish to want a retake!

tin-tin said...

really sad that the reason now for people wanting to be a nurse/doctore is because of the money or because they want to get out of the country and not anymore just to serve.

honestly, when i was still a kid i really wanted to be a doctor. that is my number one dream. all my toys were doctor tools. hehe. but i didn't pursue it. because i became afraid. because i know one way or another a patient will die. and i just can't accept having a patient die.

nonsense. just wanna share. hehehe :)

Dr. Emer said...

SIDNEY: If you passed before, then you will be confident you can pass again.

TIN-TIN: You would have been a wonderful doctor, I bet.

ipanema said...

But there are a few who are hungry and still strive for integrity and honor. They want a retake. But it is unfortunate because I do not think that will happen.


I have nothing against those who want to retake, just be practical, there's nothing one can do. There are simply a--------s and it so happen there were some in this batch.

With the present economic set-up we are in, integrity and honour can't feed you nowadays. I hope everyone learn from this.

bayi said...

It is sad that people want to be nurses because it is a most convenient ticket out of the country and a ticket to money. But I don't think these people have compromised their integrity though. They serve people with their skills and they choose to make good money in return, in the US if not in the Philippines. It is regrettable that they choose not to remain in the Philippines to serve their own people and to work in the country that has trained them.

If they have signed a bond to serve their country and they break the bond to go to the US, then their integrity has taken a back seat.

On a lighter note, I wonder if GMA has considered asking the US to fund nursing schools in the Phils, since so many of the nurses have gone to work in the US upon graduating. :)

Sidney said...

Doc, I always passed my exams but more than once it was more about luck than brains! ;-)
And I wouldn't even dare to take again any of my exams I took when I was a student.

may said...

i will never agree with a retake if i was in this batch. it is not fair that i suffer the consequence of a number of selfish people. what the government needs to do is make sure this will not happen again.
on a totally unrelated thing, i'm sorry about the spammers...

Dr. Emer said...

IPANEMA: I also fear no one will learn from this. It will not stop the cheating. It will, however, teach the cheaters to be more careful next time. I know only very few can handle integrity and hunger at the same time, but faced with the problem of siding between the ways of angels and beasts, I try my best to support the causes of the former.

BAYI: Asking the US to set up nursing schools here and fund them? I think that's a great idea!

SIDNEY: Every test you took was out of luck? You are a very modest person, my friend.

MAY: I respect and understand your opinion. That is, after all, the decision of the majority of Batch 2006. I can see how unfair it is for those who really studied, passed, and should have a nursing license by now. But the "cheating stigma" has enveloped both the good and the bad eggs. What I am afraid of, is the long-term effect --- how the US and other western employers will regard our nursing graduates.

On the spam thing, there's nothing to be sorry about. Kung kayo lang talagang mga kaibigan ko ang commenters dito, there will be NO need to moderate anymore.

Tani said...

doc, i too meant it when i said during my med school interview that i wanted to serve. i think i would have served the sick for free. i would have been a doctor to the barrios or an emergency room physician. i love the adrenaline rush i get seeing a patient for the first time and being given the opportunity to manage his/her case.

but i'm guilty of shifting priorities. family welfare comes first. i had to think of my own kids before my other passions. yup, hunger is a significant factor.

Tani said...

doc, i too meant it when i said during my med school interview that i wanted to serve. i think i would have served the sick for free. i would have been a doctor to the barrios or an emergency room physician. i love the adrenaline rush i get seeing a patient for the first time and being given the opportunity to manage his/her case.

but i'm guilty of shifting priorities. family welfare comes first. i had to think of my own kids before my other passions. yup, hunger is a significant factor.

Tani said...

adrenaline rush i get seeing a patient for the first time and being given the opportunity to manage his/her case.

but i'm guilty of shifting priorities. family welfare comes first. i had to think of my own kids before my other passions. yup, hunger is a significant factor.

ipanema said...

Dr. Emer, that's true. But judging at the number of OFWs and those long queues at POEA everyday, I have no other reason but to say that we need more to feed our family. There are Filipinos here with PhDs who say their title don't earn them much back home.

Bayi: What if the US will give us money to build more hospitals and tell all Filipino nurses in the US to go back home because there are more US-funded hospitals now. :)

Jules said...

sayang, sana may optional retake sa maygusto.

it would be damn funny if this ongoing law boards will have a leakage scandal also.

Dr. Emer said...

TANI: I understand. Family welfare should indeed come first.

IPANEMA: Meron nga akong kilala may PhD, pero DH sa HK. :(

JULES: Even the Bar exams wasn't spared. Remember the leaks in the '80s and '90s?