Press Release
September 7, 2010


Senator Edgardo J. Angara is set to continue dialogues with leaders of the nursing profession to find a solution to the lack of job opportunities for nurses in the Philippines and the apparent deterioration in the quality of nursing education.

The continuing discussions set for next week will be held at the Senate and will be attended by the leaders of the nursing profession.

"I have tasked the Congressional Commission on Science Technology and Engineering (COMSTE) and the UP Law Center to help find innovative solutions to this problem," said Angara, who Chairs COMSTE.

COMSTE Executive Director Dr. Gregory Tangonan will discuss the initiatives that the Commission members have discussed, which includes tapping nurses for the expansion of the National Teleheatlh Program, while the UP Law Center will present a draft of a bill entitled Community Health Delivery and Health Team Placement Act.

Nursing Solution

In further response to the problems of the nursing profession, Angara through COMSTE is supporting the expansion of the National Telehealth Program which aims to deploy telehealth nurses in doctor-less, remote, underserved areas of the country. This proposal already has a PHP100 Million allocation in the 2009 and 2010 GAA, which was facilitated by Angara.

Equipped with the technology, technical know-how, and mandate, these Telehealth nurses will ensure that all patients in remote underserved areas receive the best care possible. The Telehealth Nurses will be trained on how to use a mobile phone to keep patient records and to refer cases via teleconferencing to the nearest provincial or regional hospital. For specially difficult cases, they will be referred to UP Manila National Telehealth Center which has access to all the specialties in the Philippine General Hospital.

The telemedicine program has been running for the past five years through the DOH Doctors-to-the-Barrio program. It can now be deployed to doctor-less municipalities around the country.

Angara envisions that with the deployment of Telehealth nurses, people from rural communities, who are not able to consult a doctor, will be provided full access to the medical and health services they direly need.

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