First off, full disclosure: I’ve never watched DH and wouldn’t have seen this story if it wasn’t on the boss’ site. Her take on it is where I’d line up if I had an interest in the fight. Here’s the offending line, thanks to Pinoymoneytalk.

Har de har. Desperate Comedy Writers is more like it. By the way, the actor playing the doctor is Nathan Fillion. He formerly served as the Captain of the Serenity. That’s a role I’d like to see him reprise, as he was absolutely perfect in it. How ’bout a sequel, guys?

But back to DH. The only reason I’m opining on this is that it’s a little bit ironic that DH singled out the Philippines to slander its medical profession. Google “philippine nurse recruit” and you’ll see why it’s ironic. The fact is, the US is a net importer of medical professionals from the Philippines. There’s currently an oversupply of nurses there and an under supply here, Filipino nurses come well trained and proficient in English, and as one hospital recruiter puts it, she got tired of playing recruit shuffleboard with US nurses flitting between different hospitals based on ever increasing incentive packages luring them from one hospital to another.

Johnson explains that she suggested her hospital try recruiting foreign nurses because she got tired of the competitive “how-can-I-make-my-opportunity-more-attractive” strategy that hospitals were using to steal nurses from the next facility—a strategy Johnson candidly admits she has used herself. With executive management support, she identified a small recruitment agency and assembled a team of three directors and a Human Resources nurse recruiter to go to the Philippines in December 2000. The team consulted both clinical and administrative experts to craft a list of screening questions for interviews—for example, “If you had a patient that presented with xyz symptoms, how would you handle it?”

An abundant supply—and a lengthy process

The recruiting team found the Philippine nurses well prepared and the number wanting to come to the U.S. abundant—driven partly by a Philippine over-supply of nurses. The team contracted with just over 160 nurses, with a three-year term of commitment contingent on obtaining a visa and license, and subject to hospital employee rules and regulations.

That article is from 2003. Things evidently haven’t changed all that much, other than that in the intervening four years we have many more Filipino nurses working here than we did then because the recruiting drives have been successful. Now, I’m sure it’s easy to find some fault with what I’m about to say, but aren’t professionally trained people who supply skills that we’re currently short of, and who will respect our immigration laws and processes, exactly the sort of immigrants that all Americans (other than lame Hollywood comedy writers) would welcome with open arms? I would think so. So why insult them with a cheap shot? Because the DH writers were lazy and figured Jesse and Al would give it a pass.

Well, that’s network dramedy TV for you. I’ll stick to Mythbusters and Dirty Jobs, thankyouverymuch.

Tags: immigration