Japan Recruits Foreign Nurses to Care for Elderly

August 26, 2009 § 1 Comment

There is nothing wrong about bringing in people from overseas, even if we don’t speak the same language, or learned things differently, AS LONG AS they can provide absolute commitment to the society. A nurses’ job can be tough;  recent numbers of malpractice in medicine brought to court has risen, therefore stressful, and the workload per nurse is just purely demanding. Many choose to not enter in the world of nurses, because of the workload and stress the nurses shoulder do not match up with their salaries. Unpaid overtimes are the unspoken norm, getting a social life is just another deep breath to take ( if they can get one).

I have an experience of volunteering at Kaisei Hospital, and the local Konan Elderly home, and I get to have a hear in what nurses today have to say, first-handed. I overheard one of the nurses talking to another nurse, saying that she needs a healthier life, because her shifts that went on all night and day , is just painful suicide. She adds; “Don’t care what country or what education they have,  all I want is just more people working (in the healthcare divisions)”.

I cannot agree to the point the Japan Nursing Association has made about “(Filipino nurses) will take jobs away from skilled Japanese nurses”, because skilled nurses can go on to specialize in other departments (for example the ER; there are not enough workers there either) or can get a higher degrees in nursing. Also, there is no guarantee about Japanese nurses excelling in their work, and Filipino nurses not. The worry of Filipino nurses taking jobs away from skilled Japanese nurses should not stop the plan the Japanese government has brought up.

However, it’s true. We still have to consider the fact that Japanese people can be a bit unwelcoming at times, especially to foreigners. In a country where there is still sexual discrimination in various places, it is even laborious to overcome the racial/ethnic discrimination still existing. Not regarding the language barrier, but how foreigners will be treated. There is a possibility for them being treated unequally, such as cheap labors or lack of trust from colleagues. Also, in my opinion, I believe Japanese elderly people have something heated against foreignersーit’s an ongoing thing; the Japanese during the Meiji period politically violated the foreigners living in Japan when the ruler of that time decided to change Japan into a global country (and maybe because most of them has experienced the WWII); therefore, there is a small chance of foreign nurses not being relied by their patients as much as they should.

But I personally do not worry as much, because if the country enforces the idea of recruiting foreign nurses from various countries continuously, the negative impressions of what the elders have towards foreigners may die out, therefore, the Japanese can have hope in overcoming the various discriminations in future societies.

To make a long story short, I am totally up for the idea of recruiting foreign nurses in Japan, especially because Japan does not have a sufficient number of nurses to care for the massive and oldest population. Despite the fact Filipino nurses may be discriminated by some people, including colleagues and patients, if they would like to come to Japan to help tug this country out from disintegration, then they should be 100% welcomed! I know it’s better to think positive and look on the bright sides of what these foreign nurses can bring into Japan, rather than to think of being taken care by heartless robots.

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