No disruption in dialysis service, BGHMC chief assures-A A +A
Sunday, October 6, 2013
REGULAR hemodialysis treatment for close to 200 kidney patients at the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center will not be disrupted by the scheduled rebidding for the management of the blood cleansing facility due to the expiry of the present contract by November 15.
Medical center chief Dr. Jimmy Cabfit made this assurance Wednesday to ease the fears of patients and their relatives that hemodialysis services might be temporarily shut down to give way to a transition in management after the bidding.
"The technical working group preparing the terms of reference for the bidding will definitely include provisions to ensure the continuity of renal treatment center, regardless of which company will win the bid," Cabfit said.
Vice Mayor Daniel Fariñas earlier wrote Cabfit on the issue presented by patients to avert serious consequences that would arise from a disruption of dialysis treatment in case there would be a change from the present service provider to another company.
"We share the patients’ apprehension, especially so in the wake of the recent four-day cessation of hemodialysis service in your medical center due to the need to repair or replace the damaged reverse osmosis membrane filtering and purifying water for the dialysis machines," Fariñas said.
The four-day shutdown from August 20 to 23 forced patients to seek treatment in other hemodialysis centers. Not all were accommodated, however, as they could not shell out cash payments required by some treatment centers which do not accept guarantee letters of support from the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office or the Philhealth assuring payment of the service.
As a result, the patients said some of them developed complications such as difficulty breathing and accumulation of liquid in the lungs and other parts of their bodies for skipping on treatment.
"Given the gravity of consequences, we are optimistic that your administration will seriously study the proposed transition, with the end of preventing and minimizing any negative impact and serious effect that may arise from the temporary disruption of such vital service of the city’s top medical center for North-Central Luzon," Fariñas wrote Cabfit.
With 18 hemodialysis machines, the BGHMC renal treatment center is the busiest in Northern Luzon. It is open from Monday to Saturday, on a four-shift of four hours each daily, from 6 a.m. to 12 midnight to be able to accommodate the increasing number of who, as of last September 20, reached 187.
Patients came from various parts of the Cordillera, La Union, Pangasinan and the Ilocos were drawn to the BGHMC which has the cheapest rate at P2,2000 per session and to Baguio by the recent opening of a district office of the PCSO that issues out guarantee letters of support to help them sustain their life-time treatment. (Ramon Dacawi)
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on October 07, 2013.