Foreign-educated nurses, many of whom hail from the Philippines, provide care for patients in an American healthcare system that sorely lacks a sufficient workforce. The U.S. has had a drastic nursing shortage for years, and unfortunately it is poised to worsen.

That is where foreign-educated nurses have offered critical support. And while they help keep American healthcare facilities afloat, they also provide immense benefits to the Philippines economy.

CNN Philippines published a recent report that demonstrates the breadth of this economic support. Many nurses working in the U.S. who come from the Philippines send remittances to their families who remain behind. In 2022 remittances sent to the Philippines totaled a record-high $36.14 billion, or nearly 9% of the country’s GDP. The Philippines’ central bank only expects remittances to increase.

The U.S. in particular fuels remittances sent to the Philippines. According to CNN Philippines, the U.S. alone accounts for over 41% of all remittances that arrive in the country. These overseas foreign workers work in a variety of industries, but healthcare professionals contribute significantly to that total.

Remittances are a lifeline for Filipino families. As CNN Philippines notes, families say they rely on them for education, medical expenses, and everyday household needs.

Overseas foreign workers are often called “modern-day heroes” in the Philippines. Their economic impact in the country demonstrates why that’s the case. They also happen to be heroes for American patients who rely on their expert care.