By heroes, for heroes? Footwear for nurses gains online buzz due to its price

January 5, 2022 - 6:02 PM
Nike Air Zoom Pulse
A photo of the Nike Air Zoom Pulse footwear as uploaded by Nike Park Philippines on its Facebook page on Jan. 4, 2022. (Photo from Facebook/Nike Park Philippines)

Is it really for nurses?

A pair of shoes that claims to be designed for nurses caught attention online.

Nike Park Philippines on Tuesday advertised the Nike Air Zoom Pulse shoes on its Facebook page, a footwear that is “designed for nurses and other everyday heroes.”

According to its product description, it has “cushioning and flexible traction for a comfortable, natural feel that lasts through long shifts on dry and slippery surfaces.”

It claims that it is made of durable, synthetic material that is “easy to clean” and has a soft foam cushioning that supposedly makes it comfortable for “long stretches.”

The product has a slip-on design and elastric strap at the heels.

“The durable design is easy to clean, pull on and take off to keep you ready for the unexpected,” it said.

The pair of footwear cost P6,445.

Based on another post, healthcare workers who purchase the model from Dec. 24, 2021 to Jan. 16, 2022 are entitled to a 50% discount.

The discount is only valid for single purchase and can be availed at selected branches, namely Nike Fort, Mall Of Asia, Glorietta, SM North, Trinoma, Ermita, Ayala Bay and Ayala Cebu.

Healthcare workers must also sign up for Nike Park Membership at Nike stores or at the Park Access members-only site.

A maximum of two pairs per customer is allowed, according to brand.

The post made buzz on both Facebook and Twitter where Filipinos expressed their thoughts, especially since it targeted nurses who are known for receiving less-than-average wages in the country.

“Alam ba ng Nike how much basic pay ng nurses sa Pilipinas?” a Twitter user wondered.

His post has since earned almost 30,000 likes, more than 2,000 retweets and more than 800 quote tweets so far.

“Nakita na ba nila ang payslip ng mga nurse dito sa Pinas (especially) ‘yung nsa public hospital, ang liit kaya,” another Twitter user commented.

“*Checking Nike’s website then seeing the amount of your salary tagged on a pair of shoes,” wrote another online user.

“Use the ‘nurses are heroes’ branding for PR but don’t make it affordable for nurses. Wow, make it make sense, Nike,” a different Filipino tweeted.

There are others who claimed that in the United States, nurses can supposedly get the pair of shoes for free.

“LOL here in the U.S. they used to give it for free, as long as you had a coupon. It’s not very good quality… No way it should cost like that. Stop ripping the overworked, underpaid staff RNs (registered nurses) in the Philippines,” another Twitter user wrote.

Others, however, noted that it is at the discretion of the individual whether he or she would spend for the footwear.

“At the end of the day, it’s still Nike. Nasa tao na ‘yan if they would spend that much for that. Comments saying na even if 50% off namamahalan, please naman, hindi naman basta na lang ‘yung materials na ginamit (diyan),” a Filipino tweeted.

Another Twitter user commented that it is “not Nike’s fault that the pay of nurses in the Philippines and US are drastically different.”

“It’s the government’s,” she added.

John Steven Soriano or Nurse Even, a Filipino nurse-blogger based in the United Kingdom, previously created a clip which referenced nurses’ low pay.

In his video, the nurse’s application was only considered after saying that he is okay with a salary of “10k” or P10,000 per month, which was even considered as a “bit high” on the part of the recruiter.

Based on a 2020 news report, an entry-level registered nurse in the country receives an average salary of P8,000 to P13,500 per month, according to data from the labor department.

The report said that registered nurses hired by hospitals earn an average of P9,757 a month. In government, the average salary is at P13,500 per month while in the private sector, the rate is around P10,000 monthly.

In October of last year, a group of nurses called on the government to provide them better salaries and improved working conditions.

President Rodrigo Duterte last December was reported to have approved the release of benefits to qualified healthcare workers in the form of cash equivalents.

These benefits include provision of meals, accommodation, and transportation.

RELATED: Study reveals Filipino nurses are the lowest paid among Southeast Asian counterparts