In our constant battle with injustice towards us Filipino nurses we are faced again with another obstacle: a DOH Circular Letter stating that DOH retained Hospitals are now prohibited from accepting Nurse Trainees and Volunteer Nurses. Okay, so.. big deal. No more unexperienced nurses to train, no more training fees, no more working without pay. While it may sound like great news to some, it posed a major threat on us. Nurse Trainees as very essential in the workplace: lesser events of understaffing, one gets to practice supervisory/managerial/leadership skills, and admittedly, it's a joy to impart new knowledge to novices who haven't grasped yet practicing nursing in the real world. Another thing is, their training fees is where our bosses generate our salaries. Now their abolishment from the faces of DOH hospitals greatly affected us. There have been proposals on how the hospital will continue to pay for our services. One is to cut down our daily basic salary, another is to cut down our number. Whichever the solution they almost came up with that time would have definitely cost us, and none of these would have benefited us other than the Hospital. Social injustice on our very faces. The nerve of those who are in the position to subject us in that kind of degradation. We are, after all, Professionals like the rest of them, but we are not treated as such. Then the answer to their prayers came. DOH encouraged these hospitals to adopt the ongoing RN HEALS (Registered Nurse for Health Enhancement and Local Service) Program [bit.ly/siAV9H]. Basically what our hospital did was it converted us Contractual Nurses into RN HEALS Trainees. The good thing about being RN HEALS is we have a relatively higher salary compared to when we were still funded by the training fees, we have a monthly P 2,000.00 allowance provided by the institution, and we are funded directly by the DOH which meant, supposedly, no more delayed pay dates. Sounds good but there's a catch: the contract's only good for one year, it is yet unknown to us if we will be renewed after the contracts end and we are required to submit paperwork which includes a journal on what we "learned" during our "training" as RN HEALS and a research paper... a fucking RESEARCH PAPER! And since we are constantly subjected to injustice in our institution, the good parts of being RN HEALS were altered. The P 2,000.00 monthly allowance were converted to Food Allowance (which we branded as RN MEALS) provided to us by the Dietary Department. The idea of eating hospital food is disgusting, but the fact that we will be paying P 90+ per meal is absolutely distasteful. We are being force-fed with food we don't want to eat while being cheated at the same time. Our salary was divided into 22 days, with every minute tardy, an amount is subtracted from our basic, if we absent ourselves with or without a valid excuse, we don't get paid for that day. We wonder where the money not being given to us will go... the removal of Nurse Trainees meant taking away the Pool Nurses as well. The Pool Nurses get their funds from us then Contracted Nurses, they equally divide to the Pool nurses the money they deduct from our salary everytime we absent ourselves or go on leave. Now, there are no longer Pool Nurses in our hospital, so where does the money go? Blatant corruption on our faces. And what are we doing about it? None... due to fear of termination. The Chief is a tyrant. It pains me that we are either too afraid or too indolent to act on this injustice.
By the time i would have posted this, i would have taken and passed the screening exam for a supervisory plantilla position in another hospital, i look forward to being called for the Personnel Screening Board, and hopefully by the end of this year or early next year i will not be experiencing constant degradation in the workplace ever again.