The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on Friday said the ban on the deployment overseas of Filipino nurses stays following reports the government had lifted the ban.
In a statement, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said the report was “totally untrue” and the deployment of Filipino nurses without the approval of the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) was “illegal”.
In April, the POEA imposed a deployment ban for selected types of health workers, citing the dwindling human resources in local hospitals and medical facilities due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The imposition of the enhanced community quarantine in most parts of the country also prevented these workers from leaving.
Those covered by the ban are medical doctor/physician, nurse, microbiologist molecular biologist, medical technologist, clinical analyst, respiratory therapist, pharmacist, laboratory technician, X-ray/radiologic technician, nursing assistant/nursing aide, operator of medical equipment, supervisor of health services and personal care, and repairman of medical-hospital equipment.
Earlier, Malacanang said the government would only lift the deployment ban on healthcare workers abroad once there is no more threat of the coronavirus in countries where they would be deployed.
The labor chief said that the overseas deployment ban on nurses is pursuant to the decision of the government’s COVID-19 task force “to ensure that the country’s health care requirements are fully met.”