Solution For Nursing Shortage Found Abroad

"The Philippines has been one of the main sources of nurses for the United States for over fifty years," That's something ETMC's Rebecca Taylor knows from first hand experience. She was recruited by the hospital 30 years ago. Today, it's her job to do the same. She says the demand for Filipino nurses is still as attractive as it was then.

Why? "We are taught in English," Taylor explains. "We may have different accents but most everybody can read and understand the basic English that's spoken."

Over the past year, both ETMC Trinity Mother Frances hospitals have taken the trip over seas. ETMC now has 90 new nurses on their way. Meanwhile, Connie Britton says Mother Frances will have 40 new recruits here by next spring, "They export of a lot of their nurses."

The minimum education for a nurse is a bachelors degrees. Many more already have a Masters degree and an average of 5 to 7 years of experience. And while the payoff seems like a win for our hospitals, Taylor says the lure of East Texas makes recruiting a breeze, "When I had talked to some of the nurses, what they make here in one day is what they'll make in a month."

Of the nurses recruited this year, the hospitals aim to find people who already had family connections to East Texas--to make the transition easier. Because of immigration, it will take 12 to 18 months to have them here in East Texas.