There have been initial discussions and meetings among the Information Technology and Business Process Management (IT-BPM) stakeholders in the region on the 2028 goal of crafting a DTI Trade Promotion Game Plan for Region 6 to be recognized as the Healthcare Information Management Service (HIMS) capital of the world.
“The Philippines produces a significant number of healthcare professionals and is one of the markets for HIMS, a scope of the IT-BPM Industry. Several organizations operate in the country and offer services that ensure quality care for patients. We have an unrivaled pool of allied health educated resources and reputation in HIM/IT/BPM delivery skills which may be a solution to the global shortage of resources,” DTI Region 6 OIC-RD Ermelinda Pollentes said.
HIMS is one of the major industries which played a very important role in responding to the global health crisis, i.e. Covid-19 pandemic.
The system plays a crucial role in the generation of health statistics to immediately respond to emergencies.
HIMs related data and information are being gathered by DTI-6 from IT-BPM stakeholders, partner national government agencies and academic institutions to serve as baseline for better and data-driven policies.
Initial data from the Iloilo Federation for Information Technology revealed that there are ten HIMS locators in Region 6 that offer healthcare services with estimated 10,700 full time employees. In addition, there are about 18 health-related courses being offered by the medical schools in the region.
Other data that are being gathered are the list of medical schools/universities in Region 6, number of medical related course offerings with enrollees and students, list of universities/schools in Region 6 offering ICT-related courses per province and number of recent graduates with digital skills, among others.
According to the Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines (HIMAP), the ever-evolving field of HIMS consisting of the processing, maintenance and care of healthcare data, for utilization in hospitals, doctors’ offices, clinics, insurance companies, and organizations that provide health-related services has demonstrated the highest sectoral growth rate in the Philippine Information Technology and Business Process Management (IT-BPM) Industry for the past five years.
Further, HIMAP pointed out that nearly every conceivable healthcare business process is currently administered from the Philippines.
“We are going to be dependent on the national industry associations, particularly the Healthcare Information Management Association of the Philippines (HIMAP). The numbers are very promising. R6 is in a really good position to become the Healthcare Information Management Capital of the World,” said Mr. Jonathan D. De Luzuriaga, President of the Philippine Software Industry Association and CEO of Spring Valley Tech Corp.
Records show that it is no longer just the large American companies that are aggressively outsourcing HIM services to the Philippines. Other prominent countries are also moving swiftly to join the bandwagon. There are already promising interests from countries like UK, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and Singapore.
“The plan of our stakeholders to support this lofty vision of R6 to be the HIMS capital of the world would cement its position as one of the country’s topnotch IT-BPM hub/location,” Pollentes pointed out.
A HIMS technical working group (TWG) for Region 6 will be formed with members coming from DTI Region 6 led by OIC-RD Ermelinda P. Pollentes; Mr. Jonathan D. De Luzuriaga, President of the Philippine Software Industry Association and CEO of Spring Valley Tech Corp.; Jessraf Palmares, Chairman of Iloilo Federation for Information Technology; Bacolod-Negros Occidental Federation for Information and Communications Technology (BNEFIT); Iloilo City Government, and National Government Agencies such as DOST, DICT, and TESDA.
A workshop with the stakeholders in the region will be conducted virtually on Nov. 7 to discuss the establishment and roles of the TWG.
The TWG will be formulating strategies that would significantly expand support to the healthcare industry and will be strategically positioning Region 6 to be the place of choice for healthcare information and other-related services.