MANILA - Pasig on Friday rolled out a new system that would integrate patients’ records in health centers and hospitals in the city.
The city government invested in this technology because “health is really our priority,” especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto told ABS-CBN News.
“Alam natin na kapag nagkulang tayo sa serbisyong pangkalusugan, dadami din 'yung pamilyang mahihirapan, mababaon sa utang. It will be a cycle," he said.
(We know that if we fall short in providing health services, more people will fall into poverty, be stuck in debt. It will be a cycle.)
“We are doing a lot of new innovations… para kahit saan ka pumunta, nandoon ‘yung records ng pasyente. Mas mabilis at paperless na,” he said.
(We are doing a lot of new innovations… so wherever you go, the patients’ records are there. It will be faster and it will be paperless.)
Pasig City will initially have 8 computers wired into the system, and eventually add 96 more laptops in 12 health centers for the first phase of the program, Pasig City Health Officer Dr. Joseph Panaligan told ABS-CBN News in a separate interview.
Thirty-two other health centers in the city will be included in the innovation in the succeeding phases of the project, he said.
"At the end of the year, dapat tapos na lahat (it must be completed)," he said.
Pasig was supposed to launch the new system along with the universal health care program before the pandemic but the project had to be pushed back as the local government focused on addressing COVID-19-related needs, Panaligan said.
“Ngayong medyo maluwag-luwag na, pinush na natin… para ma-lessen din natin 'yung mga face-to-face contact ng mga tao,” he said.
(We pushed it now that we have more elbow room… so we can lessen face-to-face contact.)
Sotto did not say the cost of the innovation, but information from the Pasig City Health Office showed that Metro Manila’s 4th richest city allocated 21 percent of its P12-billion budget this year for health projects.
“Our health budget in 2020 was P2.2 billion and that’s still our budget for health this year even if we had lower revenues due to the pandemic,” Panaligan said.
Pasig has been able to maintain its projected P12-billion budget this year thanks to a more “realistic” bidding and procurement process, Sotto said.
“Kahit na bumaba ‘yung revenue ng konti, na-maintain natin ‘yung projection na P12 billion for 2021 kasi mayroon tayong savings mula sa makatotohanang bidding,” he said.
(Even if our revenues declined a bit, we were able to maintain our projected P12 billion budget for 2021 because we have savings from a more realistic bidding process.)
“Bumababa ‘yung presyo sa same quality. Nagkakaroon tayo ng savings mula doon,” he said, noting that the city was able to save about P1 billion last year.
(The project cost was reduced but the quality was retained. We generated savings from there.)
“’Yun 'yung pinangtatapat natin sa beginning balance,” he said.
(That is what we used to augment our beginning balance this year.)
In 2019, Pasig City also had about P1 billion in savings.
Sotto earlier said the amount was used to procure tablets and gadgets that were distributed to the city’s public school students who were forced to shift to online classes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.