Private health facilities can now hire foreign nurses without post-basic qualification

PETALING JAYA: Private health facilities are now allowed to hire foreign nurses without a post-basic qualification, says the Health Ministry.

The temporary conditional relaxation regarding the recruitment of Foreign Trained Nurses (JTWA) has been provided amid a shortage of nurses in the workforce, says Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa.

However, the exemption is subject to the condition that the foreign nurses sit for the Malaysian Nursing Board Qualification Examination for Foreign Trained Nurses.

The exemption will be given from Oct 1, 2023 to Sept 30, 2024, with additional extensions allowed for 12 months based on approvals by the JTWA Temporary Practicing Certificate (TPC).

The number of JTWA in each private health facility also cannot exceed 40% of the number of nurses at the facility and their recruitment must also comply with the terms and conditions set by the Home Ministry including details of salary and contract period, she added.

“This decision has been welcomed by the private medical industry because it can help optimise their operations and services.

“With this, private health facilities will also be more ready to support the Health Ministry in an effort to meet the people's health needs, through public-private partnerships.

“The Health Ministry is expecting this move to have a positive impact on various sectors such as the health tourism industry to stimulate the economic growth of the country,” she said in a statement on Monday (Sept 18).

As for public healthcare facilities, Dr Zaliha said that the recruitment of Nursing Diploma graduates from public and private higher education institutions will be done in phases next year and in 2025 to fill the need for nurses at the Health Ministry’s facilities and ensure the availability of job opportunities for local nurses.

“Nursing workforce shortages in both the public and private sectors have had a great impact on the effective health service delivery in this country,” she said.

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