RNs are going to be used as unqualified carers in UK!

  1. I have just heard that a well-known group of nursing homes in the UK has been out to the Philippines to hire 100 Senior Care Assistants. They recruited 100 RNs on two year contracts. These RNs will not be allowed to do the training to be recognised as RGNs in UK until after 2 years. That means that the RNs will be paid 4.20 per hour instead of 9.50 as Registered Nurses.

    Do you think that's ethical?

    There is a shortage of nurses worldwide.

    What do you think?:imbar
  2. Visit Larry profile page

    About Larry

    Joined: Nov '01; Posts: 98; Likes: 1
    District Nurse running caseload and team of nurses serving the community in Inner London.


  3. by   sjoe
    Why not, if they are willing to do it? (Though the question of why they would, since they could go to the US, Australia, etc. and work as RNs for more money, comes immediately to mind.)

    This would presumably have no effect on the RN staffing level, since these people would not be counted as RNs and would not be doing RN work, so whom would it bother? (Except the people in the Phillipines, who only recently are beginning to protest that too many of their nurses are being "stolen" away by other countries when they are needed at home.)
    Last edit by sjoe on Nov 27, '02
  4. by   jevans

    Can I please ask you where you got this info from?

    Nurses from the Phillipines [in my area of the UK] come over and work as an A grade for a fixed period of time until they complete an adaptation programme. this is to ensure that they have a complete understanding of the process in the UK. This is generally for 6mths. with an inclussive mentorship programme to follow.

    I do however work in the NHS so private sector may be different- if this is the case then they will be better off working within hospitals

  5. by   Larry
    I cannot agree more with you. I have this information by word of mouth - I only heard yesterday and I think its outrageous! Apparently the 100 nurses have just been recruited as Senior Care Assistants and are paying the agency in the Philippines 70,000 pesos (just under 100) each in a country which I would describe as very poor to work for 4.20 per hour for this prestigious group of nursing homes in UK.

    I will have more information later as I am expecting a fax in next few days.
  6. by   mattsmom81
    I wonder if this group of nursing homes is providing something else to these nurses in lieu of the full nurse paycheck...like lodging stipend, relocation bonus, etc.

    I have heard of this happening in the US...groups from the Phillipines will make 'deals' with facilities like this sometimes.

    Keep us updated...we import many nurses here as well and it's interesting to see how other countries are dealing with it

    Some posters here do feel it is unethical to 'steal' nurses in this way. I have read on this BB that the US now subsidizes the Phillipine RN training programs so this 'stealing' seems to be in our healthcare industry's big plan.

    Personally, I don't believe recruiting foreign nurses in droves is a permanent solution to the reasons behind the US nursing shortage.

    How do UK nurses feel about this??
  7. by   Larry
    I miscalculated the amount - these nurses are paying 70000 pesos to the recruitment agency being equivalent of US$1,305.97 or 840.88.

    In UK there has been an outcry on similar measures see



    It is now not acceptable that nurses would have to pay any fees to work in UK.
  8. by   Larry
    Well mattsmom81 there just are not enough nurses in UK

    Why - the profession axed all their LPNs in favour of graduate nurses........

    Not enough money -

    foreign employment is a cheap alternative than to training our own nurses, however generally nurses who come here are paid same rates as uk nurses, once they are in the country.

    There are just some scrupulous private employers who are into exploitation.

    We are also concerned by ethical recruitment -

    http://www.nmc-uk.org/cms/content/home/search.asp and then download following links -


    Code for overseas recruitment
    The Government has issued a new code of practice for the NHS to help it deal with the ethical issues arising from overse...

    Ethics of foreign recruitment
    Never before have so many nurses and midwives been recruited from overseas to work in the United Kingdom. Some arg...

    Philippines recruitment rockets
    Official statistics from the UKCC show a big rise in recruitment of nurses and midwives from overseas, with more countrie...
  9. by   mattsmom81
    Thank you Larry...very interesting articles!
  10. by   donmurray
    Looking at the dates, all the references are a year or more old! For information the Rcn is broadly equivalent to the ANA, only bigger, and a trade union, and the NMC is the UK national BON.
  11. by   Larry
    I hope these aricles will please you more Dom Murray!

    <1998 to September 2002>

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    1. Strange R. Viray R. Clay M. A shared experience. [Journal Article. Pictorial] Nursing Older People, 13(7):32-3, 2001 Oct.

    2. Mahony C. An everyday story of abuse. [Journal Article] Nursing Times, 97(34):12, 2001 Aug 23-29.

    3. Strange R. Mutual respect... overseas nurses working in the UK. [Journal Article. Brief Item] Nursing Standard, 15(48):21, 2001 Aug 15-21.
    * *

    4. Daniel P. Chamberlain A. Gordon F. Professional issues. Expectations and experiences of newly recruited Filipino nurses. [Journal Article. Research. Tables/Charts] British Journal of Nursing, 10(4):254, 256, 258-65, 2001 Feb 22-Mar 7.(37 ref)

    5. Duffin C. Broken promises... Filipino nurses... were given a different contract by the trust. [Journal Article] Nursing Standard, 15(24):12, 2001 Feb 28-Mar 6.
    * *

    6. Munro R. O'Dowd A. Coombes R. Goldberg H. It's a perfect combination. The Philippines, a country that trains more nurses than it actually needs, supplying the UK, an island with a severe nursing shortage. [Journal Article] Nursing Times, 97(7):10-1, 2001 Feb 15-21.

    Copyright 2001 RCN Publishing Company Ltd.
    Volume 15(48)_ _ _ _ _ _ _15 August 2001_ _ _ _ _ _ _p 21
    Mutual respect
    [Welcome to Nurse Here]

    Strange, Rosemary
    Rosemary Strange is matron, Tamlaght Nursing Home, Carrickfergus, County Antrim






    * Abstract


    * Figure. Agnes and Hi...


    Rosemary Strange's apprehension about overseas recruitment has vanished after a very successful experience with four Filippino nurses

    THERE HAVE been so many negative reports concerning overseas nurses working in the UK that it is a poor reflection on us all, despite the fact that there are many positive stories of nurses enjoying and valuing their placements.

    Last year I decided to recruit Filipino nurses to work in my nursing home. It was not a decision taken lightly, but it was helped by an informed, professional agency that explained all the details, the pros and cons, what was expected of me as an employer and what I could expect in return. FIGURE

    [Help with image viewing]
    Figure. Agnes and Hilda use local sayings and colloquialisms

    I was fairly apprehensive, mainly because the nurses coming to me were of similar age to my son and daughter and I was anxious that they should not feel homesick for too long. Carrickfergus, a pretty seaside town, has an important historical past but is not exactly a vibrant centre for night life.

    We were lucky enough to find a suitable house for the nurses about ten minutes from the nursing home. Many of the staff helped to make it as cosy and comfortable as possible - we knew it would be difficult for anyone travelling from a warm country to the cold and wet of a Northern Ireland winter.

    After a typical Ulster meal in one of the local hotels the nurses were free for the rest of the weekend to explore the town, visit the internet cafe and other landmarks we had itemised in one of our many lists for them.

    Adaptation training started on the Monday. We had worked out a comprehensive training schedule to cover all aspects of care, and the mentors were professional, experienced nurses with good listening and teaching skills.

    Adaptation is not a short period of adjustment, it is a recognised time to become proficient within a new culture and a different environment using learned nursing skills.

    The mentorship continued after each nurse had completed their adaptation time and received their UKCC pin number, and until each felt secure with his or her individual practice.

    Looking back it has been a rewarding time. Rey, Agnes, Hilda and Joel seem to have been here much longer and are even adopting many of our sayings and colloquialisms. They have proved tremendous role models and we have learned much from their kind, considerate natures.

    In turn I hope that when they leave us they will have added a wide variety of experience to their portfolios

    Copyright (c) 1999-2001 Ovid Technologies, Inc.
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    Copyright 2001 RCN Publishing Company Ltd.
    Volume 15(24)_ _ _ _ _ _ _28 February 2001_ _ _ _ _ _ _p 12
    Broken promises

    Duffin, Christian






    * Abstract
    * A different reality
    * No obligations


    * Figure. Gilbert Vine...


    Misleading UK work contracts are leaving some Filipino nurses angry and disappointed

    MOST PEOPLE moving to another country to work would want the least possible stress in the first few weeks. If they were lucky they would find the wages, accommodation and job conditions were exactly as they expected. If they weren't so lucky, they might find what Gilbert Vinegas and scores of other Filipino nurses have found. FIGURE

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    Figure. Gilbert Vinegas: originally offered a salary of 1,000 a month and his airfare

    Before arriving in Britain in May 1999, Mr Vinegas was given a two-year contract by recruitment agency Drake International and Frimley Park Hospital NHS Trust in Surrey. The contract said he would be earning more than 1,000 a month from the word go, and his return airfare would be paid.

    It all looked good except for one thing. The signature at the end of the contract looked like Mr Vinegas', but he had not written it. The other nurses in the group travelling with him said the same thing of their contracts.
    A different reality

    When the group arrived for work at Frimley Park they were given a different contract by the trust. It said the nurses would be paying for their airfare through monthly deductions from their salary.

    For the first six months, during a period of supervision, wages would be just 839.50 a month. At the end of this time, it would go up to an annual salary of 12,867.

    'Our trust in the British administration system as one of courtesy and honesty has vanished,' says Christobal Catalan, a spokesperson for the nurses. They have been putting nurses with degrees on the same pay scales as health-care assistants. They wouldn't do that if they were British nurses.'

    To make matters worse, the Filipino nurses have also had to pay extra for electricity, gas and council tax, which they say was supposed to be included in their accommodation costs.

    Few Filipinos have made a fuss about the way they have been treated as they fear disciplinary action or the sack, says Mr Catalan. But now, more aware of their rights, they are prepared to speak out. Scores of nurses' names are on a petition handed to Frimley Park management demanding better conditions and contractual consistencies. Unison has also intervened by issuing a collective grievance on the nurses' behalf.

    Back in November 1999, the health department issued guidelines for the recruitment of foreign nurses saying trusts should be paying for return airfares.

    Another stipulation in the guidelines is that nurses should be on at least grade B wages during their initial six months' supervision. In 1999, the trust was paying Filipino nurses 236 a year below this threshold.

    Frimley Park insists it now complies with the government guidelines. It pays for all foreign nurses' flights and has offered to refund deductions for nurses who arrived after the government guidelines took effect in November 1999. Wage rates have also increased to comply with the guidelines.

    A Frimley Park spokesperson said all successful candidates are sent a standard letter setting out the basic terms and conditions and asked to sign it if they wish to take the job.

    'They know, before they accept, the exact terms on which the post is offered.'

    Mr Vinegas and his colleagues arrived before the trust's change in policy. A trust spokesperson said its personnel department had received no complaints about forged signatures, but any complaints would be investigated. 'The trust has gone out of its way to treat the Filipino nurses not just fairly, but with extra consideration because they are far from home.'
    No obligations

    The health department stresses that trusts ought to follow its guidelines, but Drake International area manager for overseas recruitment Ron Longstaff says that his company has no obligations. He is investigating the appearance of the forged signatures and the confusion over the two contracts. His company has recruited about 3,500 nurses from the Philippines and most are very happy with their new lives, he claims. 'Some agencies in the Philippines charge six or seven times more than the agency we work with.'

    Drake International has lobbied the health department to change the guidelines on recruiting from the Philippines to protect nurses from less scrupulous agencies in the Far East.

    Mr Longstaff says the Filipino nurses are 'earning six times the salary they would get at home'

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  12. by   Amber-RN
    I recently read an artical that discussed the use of foreign nuses. Specificly it discussed the idea of requring that nurses from the Philippines be required to pass a nursing test simmilar to the boards. Though recruiting nurses from other countries may not be entirly ethical, I am more concerned about the saftey of the patients. Having a test may make it safer for the patient. Nursing needs more that just warm bodies.

  13. by   Larry
    I think that in general nurses from the Philippines going to the USA are very well-qualified. I once tried to birth an agency in Manila and interviewed over 60 nurses. Some of those nurses had passed the CGFNS and English TOEFL Exams and State Boards. I was not aware that the US would accept from anyone outside US entry without passing boards
  14. by   mattsmom81
    Yes, these nurses are BSN trained and are indeed quite intelligent...my experience has been the problems we see with these nurses recruited to the US result from the cultural and language differences. Many have trouble effectively communicating with staff, docs, and patients and I have seen this cause numerous problems...some with near deadly outcomes.

    The BSN training they receive is similar to US and UK curriculum, I believe, but they still lack cultural/language skills. Some are very difficult to understand even after many years in the US...the accent can remain very heavy.

    Not that this ever excuses taking advantage of them, of course.... as seems to be occuring in the UK. Big business loves to take advantage of the little guy whenever they can.