May 15, 2011
The Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) and a national group of nurses, the Alliance of Young Nurse Leaders & Advocates International Inc. (AYNLA), joined hands in pushing for the controversial RH bill on the observance of International Nurses Day last Thursday. “We link arms with our fellow workers in the nursing profession to advance their rights and welfare. Further workers and nurses add our voices to the growing chorus of support for the RH bill,” declared Renato Magtubo, PM chair.
In commemoration of Nurses Day, AYNLA national president Alvin Cloyd Dakis stressed the importance of a national comprehensive reproductive health law in the country to address the alarming maternal deaths, huge number of clandestine abortions and rising cases of HIV in the country and the vital role of nurses addressing these issues.
AYNLA is so far the most vocal nursing organization to have supported the passage of the RH Bill in Congress. For Dakis, it is essential for nurses to provide what their patients need and give them all the options they have for their health. “By educating them through appropriate information, we can make our patients the ‘Managers of their own health’ and be empowered in their choices” he said.
The International Nurses Day is celebrated annually every May 12 in commemoration of the birth of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing. AYNLA celebrated with the rest of the world in this year’s International Nurses Day by making an online awareness campaign of the event through Facebook and Twitter.
Aside from jointly pushing for the RH bill, PM and AYNLA had cooperated in exposing the problem of on the job training fees for new nurses. Magtubo attended a Senate inquiry last January on the alleged exploitation of nurses where they have to pay fees in exchange of their volunteer work in the hospitals. Together with other nurses groups, AYNLA testified to the truth of allegations that hospitals have been levying OJT fees on many unemployed nurses in the country.
“We have a lot of nurses who are unemployed in the country but we have a lot of health concerns to address, which we believe we can contribute a lot – like the much talked about reproductive health” said Reigner Jireh Antiquera, AYNLA vice chair. Antiquera saw the importance of mobilizing our vast health human resources to help in providing services for reproductive health such as health education, counseling, HIV treatment care & support, and various RH services.