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December Nursing Test in Jeopardy

December nursing test in jeopardy
By Ronnie E. Calumpita, Reporter

The nursing licensure examination scheduled for December might be called off because no one at the Professional Regulatory Commission’s Board of Nursing is preparing the test questions.

Leonor Tripon-Rosero, PRC chairman, said the Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) has yet to submit to the board the list of its nominees for replacement to the board officials who resigned in mass in the aftermath of the leakage that attended the licensure exam given in June. The PRC schedules two nursing exams each year.

Rosero testified before the Senate Committee on Finance looking into the P46.9-billion supplemental budget Wednesday.

“None yet for December,” Rosero said when asked if the 500 test questions are being prepared in time for the December board examination. Test questions are prepared at least six months before the licensure exam.

Some 60,000 examinees are expected to take the December exam, including the 25,000 who failed the June tests.

“There is no replacement yet for the Board of Nursing officials who have just resigned. The PNA has yet to submit the names so we’ve provided them the list of personalities to fill the vacant positions. We’re waiting the submission on September 14,” she said.

Rosero said that as early as 2003 the PRC had been asking PNA for names to replace the board members who were still sitting on a holdover capacity.

“We’ll try to work it out and see how we can do so we can conduct examination in December,” she said. “We’re also looking for options on how we could be able to give examination. We hope we would be given budget so that portion of this will be used for test item writers.”

But the finance committee, chaired by Sen. Franklin Drilon, is not keen on providing the PRC P14 million as supplemental budget supposedly to finance the retake of the June tests.

“So there’s no need for the P14-million budget since the PRC will not be holding retake of the exam,” Drilon said.

But Rosero insisted the PRC still needs the allocation to hold nursing examinations outside the country like in Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East as suggested by thousands of overseas Filipino workers.

A retest would likely happen if the Court of Appeals and eventually the Supreme Court decide to order one. Rosero said would likely happen in the middle of 2007 since the court proceedings will take longer to resolve.


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