‘City can’t afford to run own hospital’

Councilor Al Victor Espino

By: Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD City – A councilor here is looking at the possibility of establishing three primary health centers in the city to decongest the Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Regional Hospital (CLMMRH) which caters not only to city residents but to Negros Occidental constituencies as well.

“We need to create primary healthcare centers because the problem of Bacolod City with regards to health care is the absorptive capacity of the CLMMRH. I will discuss the proposal with Mayor Evelio Leonardia,” Councilor Al Victor Espino said.

Espino also said that about 40 to 60 percent of CLMMRH patients are constituents of Bacolod, thus the need for more primary healthcare centers in the barangays.

He added that an ongoing study indicated the city cannot afford to run a hospital but it can operate primary healthcare centers that will cater to diseases prevalent in the barangays such as fever and diarrhea and procedures that will not require hospitalization.

Espino said they are planning to put up primary healthcare centers in the north, south and central portions of Bacolod with 15-20 bed capacities.

It will cost the city about P7 million a year to run a hospital based on Department of Health standards.

“Part of the study is to determine the financial requirement to run a primary healthcare center,” Espino further sad.

Espino said Bacolod City Rep. Greg Gasataya has committed to help put up the infrastructure while the obligation of the city is to provide the staff and lot.

One of the possible sites for the primary health center is Barangay Villamonte which can serve 10 neighboring barangays.

They have yet to determine if the center will be placed under the City Health Office since it will be city-funded.

He also said that the existing health centers do not have regular doctors as some of them visit once a week or one day every quarter.