Filipino Nurses

  1. I'm new to this bulletin board and I hope I can post some interesting thoughts for our nursing discussions. Something I've been thinking about recently is Filipino nurses. I've recently been the only non-Filipino on staff on the floor, NA's and ward clerks included. Growing up I did not know any Filipino's and sometimes I feel I missed alot in my cultural education. I never even saw much about them in the media. My preceptors, nurse managers and past collegues have always been predominantly this culture. I must say it has advantages and difficulties associated with it. Any input?
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    About Oscar

    Joined: Mar '01; Posts: 6
    Registered Nurse


  3. by   MollyJ
    I worked in an area where many of my colleagues were Mennonite and there are many cultural differences there, too. But just a couple weeks ago I was perusing my recipe box and I noticed how many of my recipes came from nursing buddies from way back and not just that culture. You know, I think the key is curiousity and a willingness to hear, listen and learn. However, anytime a white (making an assumption) middle class person gets a chance to experience being a minority--well you may be building material for a book. I am no longer in the hospital and I really miss the diversity of work places I knew in the past.
  4. by   NRSKarenRN
    In 1977, I chose to work in a Philadelphia innercity teaching hospital who's staff was multiethnic. Nurses were "imported" from Ireland,Philippines,India and Thailand because of the nursing shortage. Clientel was 90 % black; oncology unit saw New Yorkers from Sloan Kettering. It was like working at the U. N. The first three months I worked as night shift charge nurse, I had to have my aide interpret what Mrs. T. from Thailand),the night supervisor was requesting of me. Why did this white middle class nurse choose to work there? Because as a student, the other "Superior" suburban part of medical center treated the students terribly. "Your just a student, you don't know anything", while the City hospital said " Great a student, another pair of hands; What can you do, we'll teach you what else you need to know!" and made sure the students were involved in as many procedures and situations as possible. I met many brillant people,learned to understand accents, and wasn't afraid to ask someone to repeat themselves. I continued to work there for 10 years. This saturday I was speaking to a classmate in MSN program. She had recently worked at the superior suburban hospital and leftafter 6 months. 20+ years latter they are STILL treating new grads and students like dirt...have 25 RN positions open. The inner city hospital predicted to go under is strong and thriving with minimal
    turnover. Like the above poster, I too treasure the recipies collected from around the world and the cultural heritage the staff shared with me.
  5. by   moonshadeau
    I say that if you are really interested to find out about other cultures check out a course about Cultures, or cultural diversity. Growing up I always lived in a location that was 98% caucasian. Then when I moved recently, I found that my 98% didn't exist anymore. I was surround by Afican American, Amish, Noriwegian-Scandinavian-German (believe me they are still a class within themselves)and Oriental. Taking a class that helped me learn more about the people living in my community was the best thing that I could have done for my healthcare career. I can relate to my patients better than some of my peers who do not realize the "why's" behind some of what an ignorant person might call bizarre.
  6. by   AJACKT33Z

  7. by   Navy Nurse
    You might as well get used to Filipino Nurses being around. They are the largest group of foreign nurses in the states and they are producing more and more nurses each year. As soon as some states and the government relaxs regulations there will be a flood of them come into the U.S.
    It is a very popular field in college because it offers opportunity to get to the U.S.
  8. by   Brownms46
    Originally posted by Navy Nurse:
    You might as well get used to Filipino Nurses being around. They are the largest group of foreign nurses in the states and they are producing more and more nurses each year. As soon as some states and the government relaxs regulations there will be a flood of them come into the U.S.
    It is a very popular field in college because it offers opportunity to get to the U.S.

    Thank God they are willing to come here! I have worked with many, and I found them to be excellent, caring, and hard working nurses! With a severe nursing shortage, we should be willing to accept any nurse, that gives compassionate, skilled, concerned care. It shouldn't matter where they come from! No one is NATIVE to this country, and the only thing that separates these immigrants from any other citizen is the time they arrived. We ALL arrived here, at one point or another, from some place else, whether your forefathers came over on the Mayflower, the slave ships, after the potatoe famine, or to escape the wars. We should accept them, when they become citizens, as our foreparents sought to be accepted when they arrived. What a bore this world would be if there were no diversity in people. I, myself applauded them for wanting to come, having the ability to learn a foreign language, culture, and be able to work in a sometimes hostile environement. I say more power to all who seek to better their position in life!

  9. by   Tiara
    The problem is not with nurses from other parts of the world. The problem is that the hospitals will import nurses who want to come to the states rather than make the necessary changes so the environment is safe for all nurses.
  10. by   RachelUK
    Here in England we are importing nurses from all over the world to help with our staffing crisis, including Filipino and Chinese nurses and also Scandinavian nurses. Some are even being recruited from New Zealand. The problem that arises in my area is not so much a problem with the competency or cultural differences of these nurses, but with the attitudes of our patients towards them, they are sometimes viewed as second rate. This is through no fault of the nurses, but through the bigotry of our local people. It is now more or less accepted by our patients that they may have to be seen by an "indian" doctor, but they do not expect a "foreign" nurse. The majority of my clients are elderly and from working class backgrounds, they are brought up in a culture of racism and sexism and in turn pass this onto the next generation. It is regretable to say that in my part of England, any "foreign" nurse will be treated with suspicion and negative attitudes.
  11. by   Teshiee
    I agree with the cultural diversity course. Many people assume something about an ethnic group and all hell breaks loose. I say at least be on the up and up. I know respect is diverse in its own way. I am a Negro and I personally don't have a problem with anyone of any culture accept ignorant, trifling, individuals and those transcend all ethnic groups. I will give anyone a chance I look at their character not their ethncity. Working in California I have to say I love the diversity. Pot lucks are really special we bring our heritage and stories to the table. I love it.
  12. by   live4today
    Question to anyone from an Oriental background....

    Is it still acceptable to refer to people from the Oriental cultures as being "Oriental", or do you all find that term insulting today?

    If so, what do you prefer to be called? Do you prefer to be called Asian instead of Oriental? Please school us Americans by updating us on how we should refer to you, and when is it "acceptable" to refer to Asians as Orientals? Thank you so much! I really want to learn how to properly address my other brothers and sisters in this world!


    When I worked in Hawaii as a traveling nurse back in 1988, many of the nurses I worked with were either Filipino, Chinese, Hawaiian, Japanese, Korean, a mixture of these mentioned, and all the travel nurses I worked with were either Black or Caucasian from "The Mainland". Other healthcare workers (nonnursing, etc.) were also Samoan. I enjoyed working with a cultural diversity of people, and learned much from them. The Filipino nurses that I worked with seemed to be more cheerful, more dedicated, more compassionate. more hands on, more tenderhearted towards others and their patients, more willing to help another nurse or a patient that was not theirs, etc. Hats off to them all! I welcome the opportunity to work with Filipino nurses any day! They treated me very well indeed! :kiss

    "Dont miss out on a blessing because it isn't packaged the way that you expect." -- Unknown
    Last edit by live4today on Mar 7, '02
  13. by   Stargazer
    I always remember this comment by Pam of the MTV's The Real World San Fancisco cast (oh, shut up. I haven't watched MTV in years now):

    "People are referred to as Asians. Inanimate objects, like rugs and lamps, are referred to as Oriental."

    I can't vouch for the veracity, but it sure sounded right to me.
  14. by   RNKitty
    Exactly right, Tiara. Why is there a "shortage" of bedside nurses in the US? According to other posts on this board, there are 500,000 nurses licensed but not working right now in the US. They all left for various reasons, but you can bet your booties some of those reasons had to do with high patient to nurse ratio's, overtime, poor compensation, etc.

    Let's work to improve our working conditions so it is safe to practice for all nurses. Let us not exploit nurses who come from other countries. We can't give them worse working conditions than we are willing to work. We can't pay them less than we expect ourselves. Many are happy for the lower wage because it still is higher than they can make in their own country.

    I say, let's welcome the wonderful nurses we work with, no matter where they come from, and work to make sure we all have good compensation and working conditions.