Batac: Infra upgrade, workforce revitalize Ilocos Norte healthcare system

photo courtesy by Leilanie Adriano

The public healthcare system continues improving in Ilocos Norte, thanks to upgrading of health facilities, purchase of equipment and hiring of health professionals.

Ilocos Norte provincial health officer Dr. Rickson Balalio told the Philippine News Agency on Friday that local government units partner with the Department of Health (DOH) and other agencies to bridge the gaps in the healthcare system and enhance facilities.

“Collaboration is key to achieving these goals. I am glad that together, we are working on providing high quality healthcare through continuous training, infrastructure upgrades and innovative medical technologies,” he said.

Funded by DOH’s Health Facilities Enhancement Program, over PHP235 million worth of infrastructure projects that ongoing and these include the construction of a three-story tertiary clinical laboratory, two-story emergency room building and medical arts building at Governor Roque B. Ablan Sr. Memorial Hospital (GRBASMH) in Laoag City.

The Ilocos Norte government has also been hiring more staff to provide better medical care to its more than 600,000 residents.

In a briefing on Thursday, Ilocos Norte Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc reported the continued hiring of medical specialists like anesthesiologists, pediatricians, emergency doctors, obstetricians-gynecologists, dialysis nurses, nursing attendants, respiratory therapists, dialysis technicians and medical technologists.

“We are still looking for more doctors and other health professionals as possible not only for the GRBASMH but also for other hospitals. We want them to stay. Their residence is close to their work place,” he said.

Dr. Rogelio Balbag, executive director of the Ilocos Norte Hospital Management Committee, told the Philippine News Agency that a hemodialysis unit with six stations will soon secure a permit to operate.

A new oxygen plant, which can produce 10 tanks per hour, is also operational to augment the existing oxygen generator and refilling plant at the provincial hospital.

The plant supplies medical oxygen to government hospitals and even to district hospitals and nearby medical centers outside the province. (Leilanie Adriano)

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