Importing nurses from the Phillipines - page 12

My hospital is working on getting nurses from the Phillipines to fill some of our needs. We have been in the paper process for almost a year and now it looks like we actually will be getting some of... Read More

  1. by   SharonH, RN
    Originally posted by barb4575
    From my experience with Filipino nurses, they are amongst the best nurses that I have ever worked with to date. I believe it is due to their culture whereby they are taught as women to work hard, provide service and they highly respect the elderly population.

    But, after recently talking to a Filipino physician, he informed me that the nurses who are coming here now are physicians in his country. He said they will make the competition for nurses here stiff...not sure I totally agree with that, but this is was what he had informed me. Any thoughts on this?

    I always find these types of statements curious. Is there a culture that does not teach their women to work hard and provide service? I know you meant to complement the Filipino population, but really.....

    As for that bit about Filipino physician/nurses giving nurses here stiff competition, that sounds like a load of bunk. In what way would they be giving us competition I wonder. If we're "competing" to work at the bedside with the current working conditions and poor salary structure then I would more than willing to let them win the race.
  2. by   roxannekkb
    Originally posted by nursesrocks
    Immigration laws on hiring professionals overseas clearly indicate that employers should hire american nationals and residents first. When employers can show proof that they cannot hire here in US, then they can hire overseas. You can go to the ins website to view the guideliness. I think the root of the problem is the long wait list on nursing programs due to lack of professors and facilities??
    The root of the problem is the poor working conditions in our hospitals, which in turn, causes nurses to quit and eventually leave nursing. Or at least, leave patient care settings. It has little to do with the lack of professors and facilities.

    There are currently 500,000 licensed American nurses not working in nursing--I am one of them. Estimates are that at least 10% would return to nursing if working conditions improved. That's 50,000 nurses alone, which would fill half of the current vacancies. Improving working conditions would also keep the nurses currently employed in their jobs.

    Many of the hospitals bringing in foreign nurses are using it as a cheap and quick fix. They don't want to change things, don't want to raise salaries, provide better benefits, or improve staffing. Foreign nurses are more apt to put up with poor conditions, and many will be bound by a contract, or they will hang in there with the promise of a green card dangling over their head.

    The main problem with bringing in foreign nurses is that it does nothing to solve the underlying problems in our healthcare system--the reasons for the nursing shortage to begin with. Since there are a number of hospitals in the US that don't have a shortage, and have low turnovers--obviously, the problem is solvable, and doesn't need foreign nurses as a remedy. Hospitals just have to want to solve it.
  3. by   roxannekkb
    Originally posted by nursesrocks
    US won't face nursing shortage if schools make it easier to get into the program and hire more teachers! Imagine there is a year and a half waiting list to get into LPN Program here where I live! And this community college here wants a bunch of pre-requisites classes, a CNA certificate, a CPR card, immunization forms etc. In short, its so hard to get into nursing school. In Phils., all a student need is a high school diploma, pass the college entrance test and you can get in the nursing program.
    The shortage is due primarily to nurses leaving the profession, not because schools are difficult to get into. Even if there were ten times as many schools as exist right now, nurses would still be leaving at the same pace. The primary culprit is poor working conditions, and job dissatisfaction.
  4. by   Bailarina
    First I have total respect for nurses, foreign and American, my last unit manager was from the phillipines and she was a wonderful nurse!
    However, speaking of the nursing shortage here in the U.S., I just went to a seminar on recruiting foreign nurses, and I learned that it costs an institution $13,000 per nurse to bring them here to the U.S. and get their license in order etc. I just think instead of paying that much per foreign nurse, why not pay nurses in the U.S. more $$, and more people including men would want to go into the nursing profession and lessen the shortage. just my 2 cents, and no disrespect at all to foreign nurses.
  5. by   Faynell
    Heard on news that Houston is recruiting (something like) 2000 philapeno nurses to combat the nurshing shortgage there.

    Here's the part I don't understand.
    I'm an RN who'd love the opportunity to work.....but have met and am meeting roadblocks on finding employment. Reason: Haven't worked since 91 and need an RN Refresher course-- Went to several job fairs where hopsital needed nurses....but none OFFERED A REFRESHER COURSE. None of the colleges offered a refresher corse.....(in NW florida)

    Know there is a nursing shortgage and many of you out there are working routinely short staffed. I have worked over the years with many wonderful Phillipino nurses and have the utmost respect for them. Guess my problem is at the administrative level with some hospitals who are short staffed, but aren't willing to offer some type of extended orientation or anything that would allow me to get back into the career I love. (worked 13 years - stopped to stay at home with my kid's)

    Just seems like there has got to be others "out there" like myself. If so, would appreciate any comments.
  6. by   Tweety
    Gee, is this ressurrect old topic week?

    We have four Filipino nurses that just started in our unit. Part of a group of ten I believe. Their first of the four just took her boards this week. They are bachelored prepared and are very excellent nurses. Like new grads anywhere they are task oriented and dependent on preceptors and charge nurses to help them think through the issues of taking care of patients. Our hospital is dependent on travelers and contracted nurses and they will help ease that burden.

    The cost of paying them to come over, etc. offsets the cost of paying agency nurses. So Bailarina in the long run they are saving money, not that I don't agree with you.

    We also have about 10 nurses from the Phillipines that came over about 25 years ago, under similar circumstances. Two are managers, several are charge nurses. So all in all, despite what I feel about them addressing the real problem of the shortage, it's a good investment from a business standpoint.
  7. by   Barbie38
    I think U.S. hospitals would not hire Filipino nurses if they are worst... to add more to above mentioned...The Philippine Board is verrrry difficult.So, when nurses pass this stage, they get to work in horribly populated hospitals, exposing to very interesting diseases seen only in books. Then, we need to take the International English Language Test in order for us to be able to work abroad.This exam is also difficult...mind you.If you are an average English talking person...even if you are a resident of U.S. you might just fail too. Then comes the CGFNS, where the exam is like to be given to Physisicans taking up nursing. ...but its not...its for nursing students. Then finally, if you pass come NCLEX... and thats where you get to be accpeted in the U.S.A.....WHEW!!!
  8. by   Barbie38
    excuse my PHYSICIANS...I was emotionally affected...sorry for the spelling...By the way...I am a nurse in the Philippines...taking care of 45 patients at shifts.
  9. by   NancyRN
    I can't understand why this keeps turning into an issue of "racisim". The bottom line is: working conditions in US hospitals are dangerous to the health of the nurse, and to the health of the patients.

    Nurses from developing nations are willing to come to the US and work under sweatshop conditions because they are DESPERATE to escape the grinding poverty of their homeland. When these nurses are imported to meet the "shortage", U.S. Nurses are hampered in their efforts to improve working conditions FOR ALL NURSES.

    No matter how well trained, imported nurses are akin to scabs crossing a picket line. It doesn't matter if you "understand why they do it". Hospitals will only improve working conditions when they are forced to do it. This will only happen when the cost of lawsuits outweighs the cost of additional staffing.

    Doctors need refuse to admit their patients to hospitals with dangerous staffing levels, and they need to be very vocal about why they are doing it.

    Finally, NURSES are going to have to stop FAKING their CHARTING!! I can't count the times I've followed a nurse who charted that she was in a room every 2 hours checking vitals when I know she wasn't. Nurses have to start saying "I didn't get to see that patient for 5 hours because I had too much work to do" and stand together on this issue instead of hanging each other out to dry (I don't know why SHE can't get done...I can!).
  10. by   roxannekkb
    The real issue has nothing to do with the skill of Filipino nurses. Or the skill of any other group of nurses from a foreign country. There are really two issues here, actually.

    The first is that pumping our system full of foreign nurses does nothing to change the underlying conditions which are causing the shortage. Rather than help the problem, hospitals will fill holes with recruitees from overseas, who are less likely to complain or quit. All of the problems that American nurses are trying to address will be ignored. They have done this before, during previous nursing crises, and as you can see, it just goes round and round in circles. Here we are, back to another severe nursing shortage. And that's because band-aid remedies don't work.

    The second issue is that there is a world wide nursing shortage, and large scale recruitng from overseas is worsening the shortage in other nations. Nurse poaching, it has been called.

    The US is generally at the end of the food chain, because the pay is better than in most other countries. So say the US recruits nurses from the UK. The UK, already suffering a severe shortage, turns around and recruits nurses from Africa and the Carribbean, where they, too, are losing all of their nurses. It just keeps going around in a vicious circle because no one is addressing the problems in nursing.

    Nurses, wherever they live, need to be paid decently, be treated with respect, and have a safe working environment where they can provide the best care to their patients. Is that too much to ask? Apparently so.
  11. by   NancyRN
    There is an excellent article in this month's Reader's Digest, called "Crisis in the ICU". A nurse anonymously writes a diary , outlining her 12 hour shift. Scary, and too true. It was sad to me that she had to be anonymous.
  12. by   RubyRN
    Originally posted by roxannekkb
    The real issue has nothing to do with the skill of Filipino nurses. Or the skill of any other group of nurses from a foreign country.
    - Your entire post was well-said!
    Keep in mind that the Philippines is a developing country. Everybody knows that in order to make money to provide for the most basic of needs such as shelter & food for oneself and one's family, it's rather smart to enter a profession that is IN DEMAND, like nursing is. Take into account that nurses who leave the Philippines are put in a difficult position - having to leave their home and some of their family behind so that they can start from SCRATCH and hopefully make a decent living in another country like the U.S., or the UK, etc., and maybe send whatever money that may be leftover back home. Don't you think that must be very difficult? I would never begrudge someone for going after the American Dream. That type of courage is what brought ALL of us Americans here. It is very unfortunate that the Philippines is left with a nursing shortage, but what choice do these nurses have? Times are hard for the nursing profession everywhere.

    As long as foreign nurses pass all the required U.S. entrance and licensing exams, I have no problem welcoming their presence at my place of employment. Personally, I have worked with quite a number of Filipino nurses and they have been NOTHING SHORT OF professional, highly competent, hard working, and friendly. But seriously, ANY positves and negatives that have been said in this thread regarding Filipino nurses CAN BE SAID ABOUT ANY PERSON FROM ANY CULTURE, EVEN FROM WITHIN YOUR OWN U.S. NEIGHBORHOOD. Of course one culture will have differences from another, but please, let's not make sweeping generalizations and perpetuate stereotypes. Can you imagine what type of UPROAR would occur if someone started a thread asking what type of experience you've had working with Jewish/Italian/WASP/Black/White/Ivy League/Community College-/(or fill in the blank with whatever background you like) American type nurses?!!
  13. by   NancyRN
    Ruby, you missed the point.