(THE POST) THE SENATE Committee on Higher, Technical and Vocational Education approved a bill that will provide scholarships to deserving nursing students.
Senate Bill 2342 or the proposed Nars Para Sa Bayan Act filed by Senator Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada mandates scholarship recipients to return service to the country, on top of their mandatory internship, in exchange for their free education.
Estrada welcomed the move of Sen. Francis Escudero, who chairs the Committee on Higher, Technical and Vocational Education, who approved in principle SB 2342.
“Para sa mga nagnanais na makapagtapos ng kursong nursing ngunit wala silang pangtustos, ito na ang magiging kasagutan sa kanilang alalahanin sa gastusin. Kapalit ng scholarship grant ay ang paninilbihan nila sa kanilang pinagmulang bayan o probinsya,” Estrada said.
The Nursing Scholarship and Return Service Program provides financial assistance to deserving students in state universities and colleges or partner private higher education institutions in regions where there are no SUCs offering nursing courses.
The program covers expenses including tuition, school fees, book and supply allowances, uniform fees, dormitory and transportation expenses.
Additionally, the NSRS will provide financial assistance for nursing board review, licensure and internship fees, as well as annual medical insurance and other miscellaneous education-related living expenses.
Students enrolled in the nursing course must carry a full load of subjects every semester and complete the program within the designated time frame set by the SUC or the PHEI.
They are required to take the board examination one year after finishing the mandatory internship program and fulfill the return service as indicated in the proposed measure.
Upon passing the Nursing Licensure Examination administered by the Professional Regulation Commission, the scholar shall serve in a government public health office, hospital, or any accredited government health facility in his or her hometown or in an underserved municipality close to his or her hometown.
The student who avails a scholarship must complete the return service work within three years from the time of passing the NLE.
“Hindi man mapupunan agad ang kakulangan ng bilang ng mga nurses sa ating bansa sa ngayon na nasa kabuuang 127,000, makasisiguro tayo na mayroong mga lisensyadong nurses na makakapagsilbi sa kanilang kinalakihang probinsya o bayan kapag nakapagtapos na sila ng kursong nursing at pumasa na sa licensure exam,” the senator said.