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The real score of nursing shortage in the Philippines

Is there really a nursing shortage in the Philippines or is there an oversupply of nurses in the Philippines?  The answer to these questions is both yes.  There is a nursing shortage in the Philippines and at the same time an oversupply of nurses.  While in economics, the demand is immediately address by supply, in reality, this is not necessarily so.

The nursing shortage in the Philippines is reflected by the poor state of healthcare system in the Philippines.  According to the National Health Institute of the University of the Philippines, six of 10 Filipinos who submit to illness die without getting medical attention.   While this sounded preposterous in urban communities and cities, this is a painful reality in rural communities especially located in the outskirts of the country.  Apparently, doctors and nurses are not available in the rustic countryside because no one is willing to go and work there.  Hence, while we may have an oversupply of healthcare workers particularly nurses in urban centers,  there is practicality one to none healthcare workers in the rural borders of the country where the government do not bother reaching, where only charitable missionaries work and where nursing professionals would not go because they will be deprived of the modern life.

The nursing shortage in the Philippines also remains true in urban communities as reflected by the poor service of healthcare system.  There is clearly a shortage of nurses in public hospitals which could otherwise conduct community healthcare outreach programs to rural areas, where many Filipinos still resort to fake healers and other fake medical practitioners because of the increasing cost of healthcare.  However, since public healthcare service institutions do not have the budget to hire additional nurses,  they remain stagnant and do not expand their services to reach the rural communities.  That is why despite the sufficient or oversupply of nurses that could otherwise fill the shortage, the needed additional nurses are not hired at the expense of inadequate service to the public and the increasing unemployment rate of professional nurses.

The nursing shortage in the Philippines will remain true because of the continuing demand for healthcare workers abroad.  With no employment opportunities for nurses in the Philippines and the more promising employment of nurses abroad in practically all parts of the globe, Filipino nurses will forever be aiming to seek employment abroad and practice their professions outside the country regardless if they are assigned in the rustic outskirts of a foreign land so long as they are paid fairly for their jobs.


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