President’s Hall, Malacañan Palace
September 28, 2023
President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. witnessed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Clinical Care Associates Program between the Department of Health (DOH) and Commission on Higher Education (CHED) in a ceremony at the President’s Hall in Malacañan Palace.
The MOU will address the challenge of Human Resource for Health (HRH) shortage in the country by allowing the hiring of Filipino underboard BS Nursing graduates from participating public and private Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) to public and private hospitals.
“The Clinical Care Associates Upskilling Program, formalized through the Joint Administrative Order No. 2023-0001 and the Memorandum of Understanding that has been signed today, is among our solutions to this key concern. In fact, this is a groundbreaking endeavor – and I am confident that this program will help address the lack of healthcare workers in the country today,” the President stated in his keynote message.
He added that “aside from the boost it will give to the quality of our healthcare professional services, it will also reaffirm our unified efforts of our agencies, hospitals and Higher Education Institutions to prepare our nursing graduates for their board exam and their chosen career paths.”
The Chief Executive expressed his appreciation to the Private Sector Advisory Council (PSAC) Healthcare Sector Group for its participation in crafting the MOU and the Joint Administrative Order No. 2023-0001 (JAO) or the Implementing Guidelines for the Nurse Workforce Complementation and Upskilling Program for Clinical Care Associates issued by the DOH and CHED last August.
“To the hospitals, the Higher Education Institutions and all those who are directly involved with our Clinical Care Associates: this is your chance to pass on to our learners the highest level of competence, hospitality, service that we Filipinos have become famous for. To DOH and CHED: I direct you to oversee the efficient implementation of this program and ensure that it is done according to global standards. And to the underboard nurses out there who are contemplating what to do next: I call on you to apply for this program. Embrace the support being wholeheartedly given to you by the government and the institutions we represent,” President Marcos Jr. stressed.
Central to the JAO are provisions designed to support underboard BS Nursing graduates by establishing a clear pathway for these aspiring healthcare professionals to be employed and assume vital non-core functions in public and private hospitals as Clinical Care Associates under the mentorship of registered nurses. At the same time, they are allowed to continue nursing licensure review programs in participating public and private Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) for them to become fully qualified nurses in the future.
More than 50 public and private hospitals and 19 HEIs are signatories to the MOU on the Clinical Care Associates Program.