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PRC won't cancel December nursing exam

PRC won't cancel December nursing exam

The Nursing Licensure Examination (NLE) in December will go on as scheduled, the Professional Regulation Commission said Thursday.

"If ever we fail to get board examiners [to prepare the questions], we have other means to give the examination," PRC Chairwoman Leonor-Tripon Rosero told ABS-CBN's Magandang Umaga Pilipinas.

Rosero said PRC will wait for the replies of some 30 members of the Philippine Nurses Association who were sent invitations to prepare the 500 questions for the NLE. She said the deadline was set for September 14.

She said the nurses selected will still have to submit requirements before PRC considers them to become board examiners.

PRC sent out invitations to prospective examiners after members of the Board of Nursing resigned in the aftermath of the leakage that marred the June exam.

During Wednesday's budget hearing at the Senate, Rosero told the members of the Committee on Finance that PRC has yet to prepare the 500 test questions for the December examination. Test questions are prepared at least six months before the exam.

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

"There [are] no replacements yet for the Board of Nursing officials who have just resigned. PNA has yet to submit the names so we’ve provided them the list of personalities to fill the vacant positions. [We'll wait] for the submission on September 14," she said.

No additional budget

Rosero said that as early as 2003, 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 [it] so we can conduct [the] examination in December," she said. "We’re also looking for options on how we [would] be able to give examinations. We hope we would be given a budget so that a portion of this will be used for [the salary of] test item writers."

The finance committee, chaired by Sen. Franklin Drilon, is, however, not keen on providing PRC the 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 a retake of the exam," Drilon said.

Rosero, however, insisted 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 order it. Rosero said the retake could take place in the middle of 2007 since the court proceedings will take longer to resolve.

In the interview Thursday Rosero maintained PRC's previous "no retake" stand.

Rosero had said that it's impossible to identify examinees that benefited from the leakage.

She also said that PRC is still waiting for the final result of the National Bureau of Investigation's probe.

She said PRC will not be able to give comments and resolve the issue pending NBI's investigation.

Some 17,000 examinees passed the June exam out of 42,000 nursing graduates who took it.

Those who passed failed to take their oath as new nurses after the appellate court issued a 60-day temporary restraining order


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