A new batch of Philippine health workers, prequalified to train for practicing their profession in Japan under a bilateral agreement, left the Philippines for Japan on Wednesday.
The 144 health workers -- 64 nurses and 80 caregivers -- are required to participate in a six-month language program before starting medical training at Japanese health institutions, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration said.
The group already underwent a six-month Japanese language course in the Philippines, a measure aimed at increasing the chances for Filipino candidates to pass the Japanese licensure exam for nurses and caregivers.
Up until May last year, the Philippines sent 237 nurses and 396 caregivers to Japan under the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement, which took effect in December 2008.
But so far only 25 Filipino nurses and 43 caregivers have passed the Japanese licensure examinations.
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