PH temporarily bans deployment of health workers abroad amid COVID-19 outbreak

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddyboy Locsin denounced POEA's deployment ban for health workers, saying it was a violation of the Constitution.

4/10/2020 1:55:00 PM

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddyboy Locsin denounced POEA's deployment ban for health workers, saying it was a violation of the Constitution.

The Philippine government has temporarily banned doctors, nurses, microbiologists, and other medical workers from leaving to work abroad as the country grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 10) —The Philippine government has temporarily banned doctors, nurses, microbiologists, and other health workers from leaving to work abroad as the country grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic.An April 2 order signed by Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, who sits as chairperson of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA), restricts medical frontliners from leaving the country"until the national state of emergency is lifted."

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Citing a provision of Republic Act 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, the POEA said the Executive has been given the power to tap more health workers as additional manpower as the country combats the novel coronavirus outbreak.Covered by the temporary overseas deployment ban are medical doctors, nurses, microbiologists, molecular biologists, medical technologists, clinical analysts, respiratory therapists, pharmacists, laboratory technicians, X-ray or radiologic technicians, nursing assistants or aide, operators of medical equipment, supervisor of health services and personal care, and repairmen of medical equipment.

"It is of paramount national interest to ensure that the country shall continue to have, sustain the supply of, and prepare sufficient health personnel to meet any further contingencies, especially to replace, substitute or reinforce existing workforce currently employed, deployed or utilized locally," the POEA order read.

Public and private hospitals have reported thinner workforce as some frontliners have been forced to undergo self-quarantine after being exposed to COVID-19 patients. More thanhave also been infected, while 17 doctors have died due to the disease, the Philippine Medical Association said.

READ: Medical group cites protective equipment lack for death of 17 doctorsShould the national emergency end, medical professionals will still be stopped from leaving unless travel restrictions to their destination countries due to COVID-19 are lifted. 

Foreign Affairs Secretary Teddyboy Locsin denounced POEA's move. In a tweet, the country's top diplomat said authorities were"dead wrong" and are"violating the Constitution" with the deployment ban. Read more: CNN Philippines »

Nakakagigil yung katangahan. Wala man lang ba nag brought up nung idea na merong mga employed abroad na naka annual leave lang sa Pinas or umuwi lang pero may obligation pa din sa employer. As in isa man lang sa meeting nung binabalangkas yung memo. Wala naglakas loob magsabi eto na naman tong mga bobo sa gobyerno eh diba ganyan din yung dahilan nila na wag daw higpitan mga tsekwa sa pagpasok sa pinas sa gitna ng krisis dahil di daw makatao kaya dapat daw bukas palad natin welcome virus,ngayon naman unconsiutional? nababaliw na tong si locsin

Wow okay ban us from leaving, but you cant force us to 'volunteer'. Unless we have the same salary and benefits with the regular PNP's. Temporary? Then give us those salary and benefits 'temporarily'. I'd rather stay at home than risk my life 'for free'. Ohhhh woooww. Just because they needed health care professionals they would restrict them from going abroad. When nurses asked for the SG 15 that they deserve, the Govt cant provide it Even if its under the const'n that their starting salary shud be SG15,they cant even implement.

Thank you very much sir! ❤ teddyboylocsin Di ba temporary lang? In times of emergency when the security of the state warrants, that should be done. Di ba this is war? Hardly agree with Locsin but in this case he is spot on teddyboylocsin There goes “its greener on the other side”!

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POEA defers deployment of health workers abroad as PH grapples COVID-19The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) has temporarily suspended the deployment of health care workers abroad “to prioritize” human resource in the country. | KAguilarINQ KAguilarINQ Compete with the salaries and benefits of healthworkers abroad.. Maybe then you won't have to ban them since they would rather stay here KAguilarINQ Sana gandahan nyo din ang sweldo. KAguilarINQ Pay us in exact denominations that we are receiving or going to receive abroad, nurse-patient ratio, less ego from some doctors and breaktime and yeah CE units that pinoy nurses pay to renew their licenses pa pala.