President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is supportive of a measure that seeks to increase the salary of nurses in the private sector to make it at par with their counterparts in government hospitals, Malacañang said Tuesday.
Deputy Speaker Paolo Duterte earlier filed House Bill 7659 or the Minimum Wage for Nurses in the Private Sector Act of 2020 which urges the National Wages Productivity Commission of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) to establish a minimum wage for nurses in private hospitals.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said that while he is unsure if the President will certify the bill as urgent, he is certain that Duterte also recognizes the need to increase private nurses’ salaries.
“Hindi ko po sigurado kung masi-certify as urgent iyan pero siyempre suportado ng Presidente ang kaniyang anak (I am not sure if he will certify that as urgent but of course the President supports his son),” he said in a virtual Palace briefing.
Early this month, Roque said he recognizes the need to raise the salary grade of nurses and other healthcare workers.
He said the solution to public nurses’ low salaries is raising their salary grades under the Salary Standardization Law (SSL).
Currently, additional benefits such as life insurance, free accommodation and transportation, and free and regular testing for all medical front-liners are provided for healthcare workers under the “Bayanihan to Recover as One Act” or Bayanihan 2.
The national government is in the process of hiring more healthcare workers to augment the country’s workforce.
A study by data aggregator iPrice Group showed that mid-level nurses in the Philippines earn much lower than nurses in other Southeast Asian countries like Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia.
Filipino nurses earn around PHP40,381 per month while their Southeast Asian counterparts earn at least PHP63,000. (via PNA)