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Manila to seek review of nurses’ test exclusion

Manila to seek review of nurses’ test exclusion

PRESIDENT Gloria Macapagal Arroyo has asked the Commission on Filipinos Overseas to renegotiate the inclusion of the country as an accredited venue of the US licensure exam for foreign nurses.

“This is an isolated case and the culprits will be charged and tried, and those found guilty will be punished to the full extent of the law,” said Presidential Spokesman Ignacio Bunye, referring to a scandal in which test answers to local licensure exams for nurses were leaked.

The US National Council of State Boards of Nursing excluded the country from its list of accredited venues for testing after the scandal broke out.

At least 83 percent of the American council’s examinees in its international testing centers in Hong Kong and Saipan are Filipinos.

But President Arroyo said Filipino nurses and other health workers should not be punished for an isolated incident.

“Let us not punish the innocent. This should not be cause for any stigma on our nurses or other professionals who remain among the best in the world,” Bunye said.

“Honesty and professional integrity are eminent traits of the Filipino worker and this is known in the world over,” Bunye said.

Controversy continued to hound the nursing tests yesterday as three organizations asked the Court of Appeals to void the oathtaking of new nurses held by the Professional Regulation Commission last week.

The College Nursing Faculty Association of the University of Sto. Tomas, the League of Concerned Nurses, and the Binuklod na Samahan ng mga Student Nurse asked the court to stop a scheduled oathtaking this week and to invalidate all the oaths taken last week.

The petitioners said the commission had administered the oaths “to defeat the rule of law.”

More than 2,000 nursing students were able to take their oaths in Cebu and Bacolod before the courtstopped the commission. Joyce Pangco Pañares and Rey E. Requejo


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