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Former Senator JV Ejercito has appealed to the government to lift the ban on the overseas deployment of Filipino nurses.

Making his argument on Facebook, Ejercito said allowing nurses to work abroad is a matter of survival. Of the 511,000 nurses in the country, he said only 89,000 nurses can be accommodated in local hospitals.

“Some facts regarding the issue on the ban on healthcare workers particularly nurses. There are about 511k nurses in the country. Both public & private hospitals can only employ 89k,” he said.

“It will be cruel not to let the 400k nurses seek employment, currently idle. We are talking of the survival of the nurses and their families here,” he said.

He said even if the nurses want to work in the country, there simply is not enough employment opportunities here. He said these health workers might as well look for jobs somewhere else.

“Makakatulong rin naman ang mga nurses/OFWs sa ekonomiya natin thru remittances. LIFT THE BAN,” he said.

The government has prohibited Filipino health workers from working abroad to augment the local workforce in fighting the coronavirus pandemic. Only those with contracts as of March 8 are allowed to leave the country.

Health workers’ groups have pleaded to government to resume the deployment abroad, saying it was their right to travel and seek work elsewhere.

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