CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga — The Department of Health opened on Thursday, March 23, its catheterization laboratory ( CathLab) at the Jose B. Lingad Memorial General Hospital (JBLMGH) in this city for residents in the Central Luzon region’s seven provinces.
The CathLab could do invasive diagnostic procedures like angiograms for patients with heart and brain diseases, DOH Officer-in-Charge and Undersecretary Dr. Maria Rosario Vergeire told reporters.
“Patients need not go to Manila anymore. The procedures can be done in JBLMGH,” she added.
The fund to build and equip the “state-of-the-art” lab was taken from DOH’s Health Facilities Enhancement Program, said Dr. Monserrat Chichioco, chief of JBLMGH medical center.
Vergeire said the fund was taken out of around P1 billion given to the now 75O-bed JBLMGH in 2013 to complete its equipment and buildings. The CathLab was finished in a record 120 days, she added.
“In one to two years, we will have a Philippine General Hospital in Luzon and that would be JBLMGH,” Vergeire said.
Former president and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo said the CathLab had “given [the JBLMGH]the edge over many private hospitals.”
Vergeire said the DOH pursued this plan because it was championed by Pampanga Vice Gov. Lilia Pineda.
Arroyo said “all presidents had recognized Pineda’s priority and programs on health.”
Pineda, now 73, entered politics in 1990 as mayor.
Pineda said the people of Central Luzon would benefit from JBLMGH’s completion of its 13 specialty centers until 2027. INQ