Governor Arthur Defensor, Sr. graced the inauguration of new hospital facilities in the towns of Lambunao and Calinog on Wednesday, May 24, 2017.
In Lambunao, he attended the blessing and inauguration of the newly completed 10 private rooms and medical ward complex of Dr. Ricardo Y. Ladrido Memorial District Hospital (DRYLMDH). Gov. Defensor allotted P15 million for the project while the Department of Health (DOH) under its Hospital Facilities Enhancement Program (HFEP) contributed P10 million. He said the new facilities would further improve the services of DRYLMDH stressing that it is part of his administration’s quest to make the provincial government-run hospitals “real hospitals for the poor”.
DRYLMDH chief Dr. Alicia Cordero thanked Gov. Defensor for giving priority to the upgrading of the district hospitals in the province. She said they have also lined up the improvement of the hospital’s outpatient department and Public Health Unit as well as construction of additional two operating rooms. DRYLMDH is a 50-bed hospital with an average occupancy rate of 128 percent.
In Calinog, Defensor led the inauguration of a new hospital building at the Dr. Ricardo S. Provido Memorial District Hospital (DRSPMDH) which was funded by the Korea International Cooperation Agency (Koica). The project is part of the agency’s Iloilo Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Area (GIDA) Health System Strengthening Project which covers Aleosan District Hospital in Alimodian, Jesus Colmenares Memorial District Hospital in Balasan, and DRSPMDH.
Iloilo GIDA Health System Project is a grant from KOICA and the Republic of Korea in the amount of US$7 million (approximately P300 million) which primarily aims to strengthen the maternal and child health service delivery system of the three recipient district hospitals and the Rural Health Units (RHUs) of nine municipalities, namely, Alimodian, Leon, San Miguel, Calinog, Bingawan, Balasan, Batad, Estancia and Carles.
Provincial Administrator Raul Banias said Gov. Defensor has already invested around P1.6 billion in the past six years for the upgrading of the 12 province-run hospitals under his Hospital Efficiency Assurance for Reform and Transformation (Heart) program. He said the hospital upgrading program does not only involve improvement of buildings and facilities but also ensures sufficient supply of medicines, acquisition of needed medical equipment and hiring of additional medical personnel. This year, Banias said the governor has requested the Sangguniang Panlalawigan for a supplemental budget of P680 million, P150 million of which is intended for medical supplies and different hospital projects.
Banias also announced that Gov. Defensor has approved the increase in the salaries and wages of job hire and contract of service employees which was included in the Supplemental Budget. The salary of job hire employees will increase from P376 to P430 per day. Banias noted that the province’ 1,400 job hire employees are detailed in the different hospitals. Contract of services employees such as doctors, nurses, medical technologists and radio technologists will also get a salary increase. With the continued development of the district hospitals, Banias reminded all the hospital personnel to also improve their services and be accommodating to their clients especially the poor.