DOH orders Asturias infirmary to temporarily halt operations
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Freeman) - September 12, 2014 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The newly-opened infirmary operated by the municipality of Asturias will temporarily be barred from admitting patients until the concern on its personnel shortage would be corrected.

Regulation Licensing Enforcement Division (RLED) chief Dr. Sophia Mancao said the recommendation is based on the investigation conducted by DOH-7, as requested by the Cebu Provincial Board.

Initial findings showed that the infirmary lacks the required personnel for its operations.

“There has to be a doctor on duty for the period of 24 hours. The municipal health officer cannot handle full time the infirmary because he has duties as MHO (municipal health officer). Though we cannot stop doctors from working beyond office hours which is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., there has to be one identified to man the infirmary during office hours,” Mancao explained.

The investigation stemmed from a request from the Cebu Provincial Board for DOH to intervene and look into the alleged lapses on the part of the infirmary officials and personnel.

But Mancao emphasized that it is actually the Professional Regulations Commission that is mandated to look into negligence concern of the complaint.

Nevertheless, the regional health office did the investigation and focused on the operations of the infirmary based on the standards set by DOH.

There are four major categories that authorities look into in terms of operating a health care facility like an infirmary, she said.

These include personnel (doctors and staff needed); instruments, drugs and medicine; service capability of the personnel; and the physical structure of the edifice.

Of these, physical structure is said to be the “most important.”

Asturias Mayor Alan Adlawan said that they will heed the recommendation of DOH.

“Whatever the recommendation is from DOH, we will follow. But as of the moment, we have not received the formal written recommendation from them. We only got a verbal one when they inspected last week. Nevertheless, we followed and stopped admissions,” Adlawan said.

Mancao clarified that this is not tantamount to closing the month-old infirmary since they are even given time to comply with the discrepancies so that the medical facility can operate back as an infirmary.

Despite being barred from admitting patients, the health facility can still continue holding outpatient consultation, the DOH licensing chief said.

The FREEMAN contacted Asturias Municipal Health Officer Rizaldy Climaco but the calls were unanswered.

Provincial Health Officer Cynthia Genosolango, for her part, said she has not yet received the report.

But she said whatever requirements that the infirmary may have failed to comply should be addressed the soonest time possible.

She added that the PHO has no direct supervision on the infirmary in Asturias and only provides technical assistance to the facility. — Jessa J. Agua, Michael Braga/ATO (FREEMAN)

ASTURIAS ASTURIAS MAYOR ALAN ADLAWAN ASTURIAS MUNICIPAL HEALTH OFFICER RIZALDY CLIMACO BUT MANCAO CEBU PROVINCIAL BOARD DR. SOPHIA MANCAO HEALTH INFIRMARY JESSA J MANCAO
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