UP urged to offer nursing program in Mindanao campus

A senior member of Congress has urged the University of the Philippines (UP) to introduce a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program in its Mindanao campus to further democratize student admissions.

“Now that UP has decided to launch a Doctor of Medicine program in its Mindanao campus, the university might as well also offer a BSN program there,” Makati City Rep. Luis Campos Jr. said in a statement on Sunday.

“We are prepared to support UP with additional funding, if necessary, should it choose to put up a nursing school in Mindanao,” Campos, vice chairperson of the House committee on appropriations, said.

Campos, the husband of Makati Mayor Abby Binay, said he is counting on UP and other state universities and colleges (SUCs) “to invest aggressively in the country’s future nursing workforce” amid the looming national and global shortage of practitioners.

Campos previously filed House Resolution No. 1510, which pressed for a P1 billion special education fund to enable SUCs that still do not offer the BSN program to start their own nursing schools.

In his resolution, Campos noted that of the 117 SUCs countrywide, only 44 have nursing schools.

UP President Angelo Jimenez recently announced that the university will introduce the Doctor of Medicine program in its Mindanao campus in Mintal, Davao City beginning academic year 2025-2026.

Meanwhile, Campos said the UP Manila College of Nursing “can help establish a nursing school in the university’s Mindanao campus.”

“The advantage of SUCs such as UP offering BSN programs is that these can be accessed freely by underprivileged but qualified high school graduates,” Campos pointed out.

Under the Universal Access to Tertiary Education Act of 2017, the national government pays for the tuition and other school fees of students taking up a four-year bachelor’s degree program, including nursing, in SUCs.

The UP Manila College of Nursing is among the country’s best nursing schools.

The school’s graduates hold the distinction of consistently achieving a 100 percent passing rate in the Philippine Nursing Licensure Examination (PNLE) since 1948.

Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) data indicate that the country’s production of new nurses has slowed down.

The country produced only 7,749 new nurses who passed the PNLE in May.

This is down 28 percent compared to the 10,764 new nurses who passed the PNLE in May 2023.

The PRC conducts the PNLE twice a year – in May and in November.

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