PNoy justifies privatization of state hospitals

by RG Cruz,

Posted at Mar 13 2014 12:31 AM | Updated as of Mar 13 2014 08:31 AM

MANILA – President Aquino on Wednesday said the privatization of state hospitals will allow government to improve the facilities.

Aquino, who was responding to a question posed to him by a student at the Ateneo Professional Schools where he was a guest speaker, said privatization would ensure that a hospital will be able to service the same number of people, but at the same time get better facilities, better equipment, and make it more viable.

"Now we are getting pilloried by privatization. For instance, the [Philippine] Orthopedic [Center], it is not just a hospital but it has been turned into parang a social care facility… somebody who is disabled that belongs to a marginal family that cannot take care of them at home, will, in effect, deposit their relatives in the hospital on a permanent basis, depriving those that should be receiving treatment from the necessary bed space use of facilities," the President explained.

Aquino, however, said that not all hospitals, such as the Philippine Children's Medical Center, will be privatized.

Aquino also discussed universal health care, explaining that enrolled members and covered members under PhilHealth do not mean the same thing.

"I was just informed by the PhilHealth that iyung enrolled and covered are not exactly the same. Merong mga enrolled na ngayon ay hindi covered; and we are working on that. The budget for DOH has been increased something like 300 percent from the time we got in," he said.

Aquino says he is also pushing the DOH to work better in preventing diseases.

"Now, I keep pushing the DOH on preventive... hindi kaya mas maganda imbes na gamutin natin e huwag na munang magkasakit? So I keep pushing for that. And kasama na diyan iyung ating pagsang-ayon sa responsible parenthood, iyong education as to best practices," he noted.