Marcos inks program allowing nursing grads to work as clinical care associates
Marcos inks program allowing nursing grads to work as clinical care associates
Marcos inks program allowing nursing grads to work as clinical care associates
by Mary Antalan29 September 2023
Photo Courtesy: Presidential Communications Office

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Thursday, September 28 signed a program that allows nursing underboard graduates to work as clinical care associates.

According to the Presidential Communications Office, Marcos signed the memorandum of understanding (MOU) of the Clinical Care Associates (CCA) Upskilling Program to create a pool of licensed nurses and address the shortage of nurses in the country.

“And as a very simple explanation, it allows…those nursing graduates who have taken their boards and have not been able to pass the board this time will be allowed to work nonetheless if they can establish their competencies in certain subjects of the nursing curriculum. And that way, they can get to work immediately,” Marcos said in his speech.

The President underlined that the CCA Upskilling Program, which was made official by Joint Administrative Order (JAO) No. 2023-0001 and the signed MOU, was able to meet the expectations of the medical professionals who were crucial to the growth of the nation's healthcare system.

“So, aside from the boost that it will give to the quality of our healthcare professional services, it will also reaffirm the unified efforts of our agencies, hospitals, and higher education institutions to prepare our nursing graduates for their board exams and their chosen career paths,” Marcos said after signing the MOU.

Under the MOU, public and private hospitals agreed to hire underboard nursing graduates as CCAs for one year, which can be renewed twice if they fail to pass the licensure examinations for nursing, and to develop an upskilling program in coordination with higher education institutions.

Meanwhile, the President acknowledged the Private Sector Advisory Council-Healthcare Sector Group for their participation in the said program, which, according to him, is a fruit of unity between the government and the private healthcare sector.'

“Indeed, the nation cannot and will not stand on the grit and energy of just a few,” he said.

Marcos additionally advised all parties involved to begin enforcing the terms of the MOU and not spend time imparting to learners the greatest level of competence, hospitality, and service for which Filipinos are renowned globally.

The chief executive also gave the DOH and CHED instructions to supervise the CCA Upskilling Program's effective implementation and guarantee that it complies with international standards.

Marcos urged underboard nurses to take advantage of the chance and apply for the program, assuring them that the government will continue to explore ways to address the country's healthcare problems.

“And to the underboard nurses out there who are contemplating on what to do next: I call on you to apply for this program and embrace the support being wholeheartedly given to you by the government and the institutions that we represent,” he said.

It was July 19, 2023, when the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Department of Health (DOH) issued JAO No. 2023-0001 as part of the efforts of the Marcos administration to fill gaps in the shortage of healthcare practitioners in the Philippines.

The Private Sector Advisory Council-Healthcare Sector Group (PSAC-HSG) suggested that it be released in order to give underboard nursing graduates a road to employment as CCAs in hospitals while preparing them to pass the nursing licensing examinations.

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