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Nation

Group bucks children's hospital relocation

Dennis Carcamo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Hospital staff of the Philippine Children's Medical Center in Quezon City  and various organizations on Monday called on the government to stop the eviction and location of the facility to the Lung Center of the Philippines complex.

PCMC community, composed of its doctors, nurses, patients and groups including Akap Bata, also launched the #SavePCMC Alliance during a press conference, calling on President Benigno Aquino III and Health Secretary Enrique Ona to stop the government's plan to relocate the hospital.

"We strongly demand for our government to spare PCMC and the health care services for children in general out of its privatization scheme menu. Instead of pushing for the Public-Private Partnership project, the Aquino government must prioritize and allocate greater subsidy to PCMC and similar public hospitals for children and the people," Anna Saplor, convenor of #SavePCMC Alliance and national spokesperson of Akap Bata, said.

"Commercialization of the PCMC will only mean higher cost of health care services for children, thus this will be a huge display of neglect of the government against sick children who belong to poor families reaching about 60% of the current patients of the PCMC," she said.

The hospital staff said that Department of Health has already announced its plan to evict the PCMC out of its present 3.7-hectare land that it is occupying at the corner of Quezon Avenue and Agham Road in Quezon City.

The group said that once the transfer plan is implemented, total disruption of their operations will be felt as it will result discomfort to their patients.

The group insisted that the area at the Lung Center will not be a fit and safe place for sick children as this will widen their vulnerability to various communicable diseases.

This will further lessen their beneficiaries and will only limit the services that they can offer as they will be transferred to a smaller area, the group added.

To date, the group said the PCMC, considered as the biggest tertiary child care center in the country under the DOH on its 34 years of existence, caters around 80,000 out-patients and 55,000 admissions annually.

It also accommodates and specializes on cancer and infectious disease cases on children and is one of the few hospitals in the country with specialized training on pediatrics, the group noted.

AKAP BATA

ANNA SAPLOR

CHILDREN

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH

HEALTH SECRETARY ENRIQUE ONA

LUNG CENTER

LUNG CENTER OF THE PHILIPPINES

MEDICAL CENTER

PCMC

PHILIPPINE CHILDREN

QUEZON CITY

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