Nurses eyed to be ‘warriors of wellness’
MANILA, Philippines – President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has announced that the government would hire unemployed nurses to become “warriors of wellness” in poverty-stricken areas.
The Nurses Assigned in Rural Areas (NARS) program, which the President launched Monday, will deploy five nurses in each of the 1,000 poorest municipalities. Each nurse can have two six-month tours of duty and will be paid an allowance of P8,000 per month, the President said.
The President said the government would spend “less than” P500 million for the program. She urged municipal mayors to pitch in P2,000 as their “counterpart” allowance for each of the nurses.
“We are launching NARS, or nurses assigned in rural areas… They shall be mobilized in their home towns, these warriors for wellness shall do three I’s,” she said in a speech during a jobs summit at the Palace.
The “three I’s” are: “initiate” health and nutrition programs and
first line diagnosis, “inform” communities about water sanitation and health surveillance, and “immunize” children and their mothers.
Arroyo said nurses who lack experience would find it hard to get jobs in hospitals here and abroad.
“They shall also serve as roving nurses for rural schools,” she added.
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