NEWS that the government is hiring an additional 25,000 health professionals is definitely good news in
this manpower-exporting Third World nation, which is teeming with jobless and underemployed people.
The government should have done it long ago, but lack of financial resources prevented it from
recruiting more health workers, particularly nurses and doctors, to man public hospitals, clinics and
Note that throughout the year, many Filipinos still die without seeing a medical doctor because
Today, however, the government is hiring health workers -- doctors, nurses, midwives and
dentists -- for deployment to the rural areas next year, according to Surigao del Sur Rep. Johnny
Pimentel, chair of the House committee on good government and public accountability, said the
hiring of new health workers is under various provisional staff augmentation programs of the Department
of Health (DoH).
To be hired are 20,527 nurses, 3,108 midwives, 440 physicians and 324 dentists. The DoH is also
enlisting several medical technologists, pharmacists, universal health care implementers and family
“We have already set aside P9.7 billion to pay for their salaries and benefits next year,”
according to Pimentel, who is also a member of the powerful House committee on appropriations.
But Pimentel was quick to explain that the new health professionals will not enjoy fixed items.
They will nonetheless receive the same starting pay as their counterparts holding permanent positions.
For instance, a nurse receives a monthly salary of P29,000 plus benefits, while a medical
doctor gets P70,000 plus benefits.
The recruitment started last October 1 and ends on Dec. 31, 2017. Application forms may be
downloaded from the DoH website and submitted, together with an application letter, to DoH regional
It’s definitely time for the government to address the lack of health workers in the