Pasay City, Philippines – Tackling matters in relation to healthcare profession regulation, the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) met with the Ministry of Health of the Government of Saskatchewan, Canada last December 01, 2022, at the PRC – PICC Office, Pasay City.
Representing the PRC were the Commissioners, Hon. Jose Y. Cueto, Jr. and Hon. Erwin M. Enad; Director of the International Affairs Office (IAO), Atty. Melisa Jane B. Comafay; Member of the Professional Regulatory Board (PRB) of Nursing, Dr. Carmelita C. Divinagracia; Chief of the Professional Registry Division (PRD), Ms. Evelyn C. Bayaua; and staff from the International Affairs Office.
On the other hand, representing the Ministry of Health of the Government of Saskatchewan, Canada were Minister of Health, Hon. Paul Merriman; Assistant Deputy Minister, Ms. Billie-Jo Morrissette; Chief Nursing Officer, Ms. Liliana Canadic; and Chief of Staff to the Minister of Health, Mr. David Keogan
Also present in the meeting were the Managing Director for the Saskatchewan Singapore Office, Mr. Greg Eidsness, and the Trade Commissioner of the Canadian Embassy to the Philippines, Ms. Angel Cachuela.
Discussed during the meeting are the possible integration of more Filipino Healthcare Workers (HCW) within Saskatchewan and the strengthening of their skills both in the academic and professional setting. Also tackled was the regulation process and the classification of nurses in the Saskatchewan province. Parties also exchanged views and information on the current nursing education curriculum prescribed by the PRB of Nursing and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), emphasizing the Philippine curriculum being at par with international curriculums without the need for bridging.
The attendees later focused the dialogue on the verification of the qualification for these Filipino HCW’s applying for work in Saskatchewan. According to Ms. Canadic, they are employing the National Nursing Assessment Service (NNAS) for the validation and assessment of the applicant’s documents.
As PRC is continuously receiving requests from NNAS that still employs manual verification, PRC expresses its hope that the NNAS will look into utilizing the PRC online verification system to make the verification process faster and more reliable, thereby assessing more Filipino HCWs within a shorter period. On the other hand, PRC also informs the Canadian representatives of the Department of Foreign Affairs’ pilot project to automate its verification system that will assist international entities in verifying Overseas Filipino Professionals credentials, and this project would be needing the assistance of the PRC.
Looking towards the future, both parties agreed on a more collaborative approach, particularly on the sharing of information on best practices implemented by both the Philippines and Saskatchewan for verification of qualifications and on the Philippine Qualification Framework (PQF) for the nursing profession. The parties are also considering the possible drafting of an agreement in future talks to strengthen the collaboration regarding the nursing profession.
Concluding the meeting, Hon. Cueto thanked the Saskatchewan delegation and stated that the meeting is a validation of how the PQF and international alignments can assist professionals towards global mobility and further enhancement of their craft.