A vibrant discussion on health and wellness and its trailblazing employment opportunities capped the yearend Kapihan press forum of the Department of Labor and Employment – Bureau of Local Employment, as Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz recognized this emerging industry as among the 13 key employment generators in the JobsFitLabor Market Information (LMI) Report 2013-2020.
Citing the LMI Report, Baldoz said the health wellness industry comprises in-demand occupations, such as anaestician, dentist, dietician, hairdresser, massage therapist, manicurist, surgeon, and radiologic technician, while its hard-to-fill occupations are biochemical engineer, microbiologist, cosmetic surgeon, physical therapist.
“We also have these cross-cutting occupations, and these both in-demand and hard-to-fill occupations—physicians, pharmacists, nutritionists, and medical technologists,” Baldoz said.
The 7th DOLE Kapihan focused on health and wellness industry trends and employment opportunities on 21 December 2015 at Midas Hotel in Pasay City.
Baldoz also said the DOLE advocates health and wellness as an important competency, especially among the youth, in the modern-day world of work. “It is part of the learning module of the Jobstart Philippines’ Life Skills Training Program,” the labor chief added.
Jobstart Philippines Life Skills Training Program is a pioneer project for out-of-school Filipino youth to learn the necessary tools and skills to be work and life ready, by the DOLE in cooperation with the Canadian government and the Asian Development Bank.
Life skills, according to the DOLE Secretary, are now emerging as essential abilities being demanded in the 21st Century Skills world of work. “A jobseeker needs to have skills for effective job seeking, which include personal branding, networking, general knowledge of the job market, and job seeking techniques,” she said.
Additionally, Bureau of Local Employment Director Dominique R. Tutay acknowledged the importance shared by the forum’s resource speakers in the DOLE’s continuing documentation and response to employment trends and updates. “The value of information we generated today is immense. We will dig deeper into the sector as an emerging industry,” Director Tutay said.
The DOLE BLE Director also appreciated the well-timed updates from the authorities in health and wellness industries as it will synchronize with the DOLE’s updating of the Human Resource Development Roadmap.
“It is important that the Labor Market Information (LMI) fits well in our Career Guidance Advocacy Program where we target not just the students, but the parents as well who have the big role and the crucial support in the career choices of their children,” Director Tutay added.
Responding on the wealth of information derived from the forum, Undersecretary Nicon F. Fameronag said the discussions brought forth a ‘fresh realization’ for the employment front the still untapped potential of health and wellness in generating quality jobs.
Catherine Brillantes-Turvill, President of the Spa and Wellness Professionals, assured that there are guaranteed employment opportunities in the growing Health and Wellness Services industry, specifically the wellness and spa centers that provide physical and wellbeing services.
“It is not just spa, but an integration of spa and well-being, that is now an emergent industry in the Philippines,” Brilliantes-Turvill said. She also added that with the growth of medical tourism, the growing demand for holistic wellness, and the increasing interest in the natural and organic anti-aging interventions, exciting employment opportunities, coupled with industry development, is on the rise in the Philippines.
Two leading universities in the country, according to Brillantes-Turvil, are also pioneering in the offering of curricular program to professionalize the health and wellness occupation and meet the demands of this booming industry. These are the Wellness Management Institute of DLSU Lipa, which offers Holistic Massage and Spa Management programs, and provide students with opportunities in establishing better career by learning the management side of the spa business.
A Health and Wellness specialization in the BS in International Tourism and Hospitality Management program is also being offered by the Lyceum of the Philippines University.
Brilliantes-Turvill also shared that the employment opportunities in wellness industries range from Wellness Center Receptionist; Wellness Concierge; Wellness Coach; Worksite Wellness Specialist; Wellness Therapist; Senior Wellness Therapist/Supervisor (Nurse); Wellness Center Manager; Acupuncturist; Wellness Chef; Yoga/Pilates Teacher; Fitness Coach; Spa Manager; Spa Therapist; and Spa Supervisor. One can also venture to become a wellness center Entrepreneur, provide management services, or be a concessionaire of a spa or wellness center.
Moreover, Dr. Mary Ruth Politico, head of the Planning and Standard Division of the Department of Health, shared the government’s employment opportunities in the health sector, specifically its Human Resources for Health (HRH) program to ensure that all Filipinos have access to professional health care providers who are capable of meeting their health needs at the appropriate level of care.
To reach more communities, the DOH targets to hire 21,223 health professionals in 2016 under its Universal Health Care Implementers; Doctors to the Barrios Program; Dentist Deployment Program; Nurse Deployment Program; Medical Technologist Deployment Program; Rural Health Midwives Placement Program; and Public Health Associates Deployment Program.
Dr. Politico presented the implementation of the DOH Deployment programs, which aims to provide HRH in unserved and underserved communities for more effective and efficient health service delivery and complement its existing HRH.
Dr. Maria Minerva P. Calimag, President of the Philippine Medical Association, also discussed the potentials for industry collaborations that will promote better opportunities both for the professionals and for the jobseekers in the health and wellness industry.
On top of exploring trends and employment opportunities in health and wellness industry, Dr Mark Vallejos Medical Officer V of the Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns, reminded on the conscientious observance of occupational safety and health and the management of emerging health issues in the workplace to ensure optimum productivity.