Compassion: A Dirty Word

Language evolves, sometimes in unanticipated directions. The word "compassion", once used in a positive manner, now seems to be used mainly in bemoaning it's lack.
I’m beginning to feel as though the word “compassion” is a dirty word. Maybe it’s the way people use it these days. It doesn’t seem to be about an actual feeling of empathy toward a patient, family member or even a colleague. It seems to be more about “ME ME ME.” The word is used more as a bludgeon to impugn someone’s character, motives or behavior than as a descriptor. It’s used to induce -- or to attempt to induce -- feelings of guilt rather than to praise or validate.

“I’m pregnant and I don’t think I should have to bend, lift, take isolation patients or work twelve hour shifts. My co-workers aren’t helping me at all. Where is the compassion?” (Perhaps the co-workers are tired of being dumped on, of doing all the bending, lifting, taking isolation patients and doing 12 hour shifts while Princess is languishing at the nurses’s station complaining about her nausea and regaling all with tales of her latest OB visit.)

“A mistake was made and a patient didn’t die, but they’re firing me anyway and I can’t get unemployment. Why no compassion for me?” (Of course *I* didn’t MAKE the mistake -- it just happened. Or if I did make it, it was because the charge nurse was mean to me, my Granny is in the hospital, I didn’t get much sleep because the neighbors were so noisy and no one taught me how to give meds anyway. Just a wild guess, but no compassion for you because you’re so busy feeling sorry for yourself that you’re not taking personal responsibility for MAKING the mistake in the first place, and you don’t seem to grasp the potential ramifications of the mistake.)

“The nurse wouldn’t give me extra water after that doctor made me NPO, find a charger for my cell phone or a bed for my girlfriend to spend the night with me. She/he was polite and professional and all, but she/he wouldn’t put out the warm fuzzies and the pillow fluffing. That nurse has no compassion!” (This usually comes after the patient in question has verbally and/or physically abused the nurse and questioned his/her parentage and sexual proclivities. Nurses, being human and all, aren’t usually inclined to go above and beyond for people who aren’t nice to them.)

“You are all MEAN! You’re just jealous because I’m so much younger, smarter, better educated and more beautiful than you. It’s true that nurses eat their young. And I thought nurses were supposed to be compassionate!” (Is it really “eating your young” if the “young” is so obnoxious, entitled, lacking in basic social graces and self-centered they cannot interact as adults and professionals with the adults and professionals around them? Trust me, Honey, if you were nicer to those old, fat, dumb, uneducated and ugly nurses who work at the same place you do, you might not have cause to complain about they way they treat you. Not that that would stop you from complaining anyway . . . . .)

“It has always been my dream to be an ER nurse, but you people are all scaring me! I never want to be as jaded and cynical as you! You should all quit and find another career because you have no compassion!” (Yes, it is my mission in life to avoid scaring anyone reading a vent thread and I’ll hop right on that change of career thing -- as soon as the mortgage is paid, the bills go away and I have time and money to go back to school to learn to be something that requires no compassion!)

It’s been a long time since I’ve seen anyone use the word “compassion” in a positive way. It’s getting so I cringe when I see the word in type or hear it -- usually in a complaint because someone didn’t get everything they wanted or felt entitled to.

PH: 1 of 3 countries on Norway’s watch list for health personnel


By Macel Ingles, ABS-CBN Europe News Bureau
The Philippines landed on Norway’s state authorization office watch list for being a problem area when it comes to recruitment of health workers.
In a recent report by Norway’s national broadcaster NRK, it was revealed that an employee of the Statens Autorisasjonskontor for Helsepersonnell (SAFH) sent a letter to the health department alleging that many foreign health workers have slipped through the control of SAFH and had been authorized to work in Norway despite lack of medical training and qualification.
The letter also said that the Philippines along with Serbia and Romania had the most number of applications from health personnel with dubious credentials to work in Norway.
Confronted with the report, acting SAFH Director Jørgen Holmboe denied any knowledge of the letter and said that his office only has few cases of applications with dubious credentials.
However, he admitted that his office is overwhelmed by the number of cases being processed by the office. The SAFH has 20 employees and processes 22,000 applications for authorization to work as health personnel every year.
Hølmboe took over from SAFH’s former director Per Haugum who stepped down from his office in May this year after heavy criticism from the health department following media reports of cases of foreign health personnel authorized by SAFH to work despite lack of proper health education and training credentials.
Reacting to the report, Philippine Nurses Association-Oslo President Cesar Dela Cruz told ABS-CBN Europe in an email interview that he disagrees with the report.
“Since I began working as a nurse in 2001, I only knew one (Filipino) who applied for licensure with a falsified board certificate,” Dela Cruz wrote.
Filipino nurses Alfredo Morte and Rosemarie Ruiz who were interviewed by NRK in the same report confirmed that a number of Filipino nurses in Norway do not have proper medical credentials to work as health personnel.
“I don’t understand why these Filipinos continue to ruin our credibility in the media without any move of contacting us in the PNA so as to discuss these things and find solutions among us Filipinos. I strongly challenge these people to show us concrete evidences and I promise that they’ll get my support,” Dela Cruz further wrote.
However, Dela Cruz said that PNA is willing to cooperate with Norwegian authorities if they are deputized to do so. He also said his organization will support the call for withdrawal of visas and work permits to personnel found to have submitted fake papers to the authorization office “after they have undergone due process.”
“I can say that they can be threats to the health system of Norway and at the same time a shame for our nation,” Dela Cruz added.
Norway recruits thousands of nurses from the Philippines each year. The Philippine embassy in Oslo is currently negotiating for a bilateral agreement with the Norwegian government for the recruitment of health personnel.

CA orders freeze of 41 bank accounts



By Rey G. Panaligan
The Court of Appeals (CA), on request of the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC), has ordered a freeze for 20 days on the 41 bank accounts of an overseas employment agency on charges of illegal recruitment.
Ordered frozen were the bank accounts of the Makati City Base International Students Advisors 4U, Inc. (ISA 4U) that specializes on a “study and work program” for Filipino nurses and other professionals for deployment in the United Kingdom.
The CA identified the accounts of ISA 4U as those in the Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co. (Metrobank), Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corp. (HSBC), Banco De Oro (BDO), Philippine Savings Bank (PSB), Citibank, and Union Bank.
In a resolution written by Associate Justice Japar Dimaampao, the CA said that “…the obtaining facts and circumstances tellingly demonstrate a well-founded belief that the bank accounts in the names of respondents are related to or involved in an unlawful activity or money laundering offense.”
The freeze order, the CA explained, would prevent the banking institutions from allowing ISA 4U to withdraw, transfer, or deplete the existing funds in the accounts.
The banks were directed to submit to the CA and to AMLC a detailed return within 24 hours from receipt of the resolution stating compliance with the freeze order and specifying relevant information on the bank accounts.
The CA set a hearing on the AMLC’s request at 2 p.m. on May 5 “to determine whether or not the instant freeze order should be modified, lifted or extended.”
ISA 4U was charged with illegal recruitment in a complaint filed by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG).
The PNP-CIDG said ISA 4U is a domestic corporation engaged in providing advisory, marketing consultancy services of training courses, college courses and university courses of other foreign countries. - via www.mb.com.ph

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