MANILA, Philippines — Senator Joel Villanueva on Saturday called on the government to improve salary and benefits for the country’s healthcare workers in the wake of lifting the controversial deployment ban on medical employees.
Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III earlier revealed that President Rodrigo Duterte allowed only 5,000 health workers a year to leave the country as the spread of coronavirus infections was improving.
“While we welcome the lifting of the deployment ban on healthcare workers, we see this as a reminder for our government to continue raising the standards of compensation for them,” Villanueva, chairman of the Senate committee on labor and employment, said in a statement.
“As we have said before when we called for the lifting of the ban early on, the most effective way to make our healthcare workers stay and work in our country is to offer better employment terms including competitive salary and benefits, and its timely payout,” the senator added.
In August, the government said only those with travel documents before March 8 are allowed to work overseas.
It was in April when the national government first banned healthcare workers from leaving the country to help in the fight against the coronavirus disease.