Nurses’ pay hike pushed anew to avoid shortage in government hospitals

MANILA, Philippines – Call of a salary increase for nurses is again being pushed to help avoid shortage in government hospitals.
Nurses’ pay hike pushed anew to avoid shortage in government hospitals

The Anakalusugan Party-list is reviving the hopes of nurses by announcing that they will continue to ask for a pay hike. The party-list nominee Mike Defensor said that is not right to deny the nurses’ wage hike they deserve.

Defensor said, “It will be a disservice to our dedicated, if not overworked, public nurses if we do not give the compensation due them.”

Defensor, who is former Quezon City Representative, shared that they will be pushing for a new bill that will increase the minimum base pay of government nurses to Salary Grade 15.

“To avoid legal confusion, we will remedy this by pushing for a new measure that will give just compensation to our state nurses and increase their minimum base pay to Salary Grade 15,” he added.

Defensor also said that the legal issue whether a joint resolution by Congress can repeal the section on compensation of the Philippine Nursing Act should be addressed immediately.

Last month, Solicitor General Jose Calida has quashed the Ang Nars Party-list’s petition to raise the wages of nurses to Salary Grade 15. The solicitor general told the Supreme Court that the petition has no “legal basis” because the provision cited in the petition had been repealed in 2009 by a joint resolution by Congress.

READ: Calida opposes increase of gov’t nurses’ salary, says “no legal basis”

“Absent a new legislative measure, there is no basis to grant entry-level nurses Salary Grade 15. Therefore the government cannot be compelled by way of mandamus to grant the salary grade prayed for," Calida said.

Universal Healthcare Act needs nurses

With the passing of the Universal Healthcare Act, the government is eyeing a massive hiring of health workers nationwide.

While the Department of Health (DOH) admitted that since the 2019 national budget remains pending, delays in issuance of salaries and deployment of public health nurses are also delayed.

As soon as the General Appropriations Act is released, DOH will be hiring approximately 26,000 rural health doctors, public health nurses, rural health midwives, dentists, medical technologists, pharmacists, nutritionist-dieticians and other health workers under the Human Resources for Health program.

DOH confirms that 17,205 positions will be vacant for nurses, who will receive full benefits of a permanent employee.

— Sally, The Summit Express

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