MANILA, May 28, 2004  (STAR) Txt in d City By Patrick R. Garcia, BIDSHOT WIRELESS SERVICES  -  The only other place besides a funeral parlor that makes me feel uncomfortable is a hospital. I dread the thought of going there so much so that I work extra hard to stay healthy to avoid making any unscheduled visits. If I need though to take that dreadful plunge to visit a friend who is confined, I then accept the inevitable in stride and shift my fear to one of anticipation. This incidental anticipation I speak of is the pleasure of seeing uniformed female nurses going about their duties. I am sure that I am not alone in this world that hold these selfless angels up on a pedestal for more reasons than one. Surely, most of the male species is drawn by the sight of that white well-pressed, form-fitting uniform, right? Okay, I think Iíve gotten your attention now so enough of my chauvinist talk before I start getting hate mail from some feminist group. My respect for nurses is genuine and they have always been one of the pillars of our service profession. In fact, the nursing profession has gained so much prominence lately that the prestige of being a medical doctor has diminished and has been replaced by the aspirations of some doctors now to become nurses to be able to land jobs abroad.

To make this transition from doctor to nurse or for anybody interested in the nursing profession, I introduce to you the Assessment Technologies Institute International (ATII). Touted to be a global leader in nursing education services for nurses, staffing agencies and medical centers, it recently partnered with a content provider to create the countryís first Nursing Telecommunity exclusively for Talk íN Text and Smart subscribers. With its service called NurseTxt, nursing professionals and students alike are eligible to receive daily nursing facts, information on nursing licensure exams and other useful information. In short, it is the one-stop information resource for all nurses.

In recent months, the ATII has become the review center of choice for Filipino nurses who want to go abroad because of its known success in preparing nurses to pass the US nursing licensure examinations known as the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) and the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nurses (CGFNS). Due to the increasing number of enrollees, ATII spearheaded this text initiative as another tool to help Filipino nurses communicate, learn and help each other out in their quest to eventually work in the US.

The ATII has proven effective in significantly increasing NCLEX passing rates among American nurses and strives to obtain the same results with Filipino nurses. By taking assessments online, nurses get immediate feedback and real-time assessment of their performance. The ATII also offers language review programs for English Proficiency Exams, such as the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), and the Test of Spoken English (TSE).

NurseTxt is basically a newsletter that has different categories you can subscribe to such as the ATII, NCLEX, CGFNS, IELTS, TSE, TOEFL, etc. These categories (except for ATII) are part of the series of exams that a nurse has to take in order to practice in the US. Nurses who avail themselves of the service receive daily factoids from whatever category they subscribe to. For instance, I subscribe to NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination, the US board exam for nurses). Everyday, I receive information on how and where to apply, changes in exam format, test-taking tips, dates, schedules, seminars, etc. Subscribing to the other categories will give the users the same information specific to each exam they have subscribed to.

ATIIís NurseTxt is open to Talk íN Text and Smart subscribers. Nursing professionals and students can join by sending the keyword NURSE to 316.

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Patrick Garcia is the managing director of Bidshot Wireless Services. For comments or suggestions, text your message to 233011 (Globe) or 2430018 (Smart), or e-mail

Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi

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