New gov’t policy on hospital classification not helpful to publicBy Tetch Torres
INQUIRER.net, Radyo Inquirer 990AM
MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Health’s new policy on hospital classification will not only make it difficult for the public to have easy access to medical services but it has also put many hospitals at risk of closing shop, a group of private hospitals said Friday over Radyo Inquirer 990.
Under Administrative Order No. 12 or the New Classification of Hospitals and other Health Facilities in the Philippines, hospitals are required to upgrade their current facility otherwise their classification will be downgraded.
Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines Inc. (PHAP) president Dr. Rustico Jimenez said if hospitals failed to meet the requirements under AO 12, primary hospitals will be downgraded to an infirmary or a clinic.
“Kasi yung mga hospital hindi na magiging primary kundi infirmary na lang po. Hindi na ito hospital…Tumutulong na nga po ang mga private hospitals sa serbisyo para sa pasyente dahil hindi magawa ng gobyerno, ngayon pahihirapan ang private hospitals. Magko close shop na lang yan eventually (The hospitals won’t be able to reach the primary level, they would become infirmary. The private hospitals are helping to serve the patients because the government can not do it at some point. Now they are making it difficult for private hospitals.),” he said.
Under the new DOH reclassification order, Level-1 hospitals should have the following facilities — surgery room; isolation, surgical and maternity facilities; dental clinics; secondary clinical laboratory; blood station; first level X-ray; and a pharmacy.
Level-2 hospitals require additional departmentalized clinical services, a respiratory unit, high pregnancy risk unit, second level X-ray with mobile unit, while Level-3 hospitals should have DOH-accredited teaching and training on four major clinical services, ambulatory surgical and dialysis clinics, and a blood bank.
Jimenez said, once a primary hospital has been downgraded to an infirmary, PhilHealth card will be useless.
“PhilHealth card is not accepted in infirmaries,” he added.
PHAP already submitted their position paper to the DoH seeking a reconsideration of the policy.
Jimenez said the new policy should be applied to new hospitals.