People of Cebu Asked to Donate 100p
to save Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC)
Cebu City Mayor Osmeña has proposed to sell a public hospital. This hospital, Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC), is the primary provider medical care for the poor Filipino of Cebu. The mayor went on to indicate that he was unhappy with the workers at the hospital as they had become unmotivated and too comfortable in the positions with no threat of serious disciplinary action. The language by the mayor was quite harsh, much more harsh that any expat should use while a visitor in another land. He can say those things, I can’t, or shouldn’t, even if I knew them to be true. I don’t know for myself but as a career US Federal Employee, I can relate to what the mayor is saying. He believed that making the hospital private would solve this problem. He is probably correct but he also wants any buyer to guarantee that Cebu’s indigent citizens will continue to receive care from the hospital. I don’t understand how introducing a profit motive into a hospital can also make it a charity hospital. The only way would be to make it so superior to other hospitals that it would draw the rich that would be willing to pay more than average cost in order to fund the care of the poor. Even that idea seems unlikely to me. I don’t think it is possible to do what the Cebu City Mayor wishes to do.
A group of Sister’s from the Netherlands offered to renovate and modernize the emergency room but that went no where. Dr. Pek Eng Lim, Chairman of the Emergency Rescue Unit Foundation (Eruf), stated that Cebu could handle this locally at the same time asking the public to donate 100 Peso each.
What? They have a source of outside funding and they are not taking it? Instead they turn to the poor people of Cebu for funding? Dr. Lim expressed concern about the 100p donation to the hospital making it into the pockets of administrators, rather than going to the hospital. The poor wont make that donation, if it happens, it will be the more wealthy people that do it and they will give more than 100p. The poor of Cebu, cannot spare 100p. Also, with the threat of the hospital being shut down, that will make it even harder to raise money for the hospital. With statements like that, I’d have to say they are not trying to fund the hospital. Sounds like a case of let the people handle it and when they don’t, the powers can say but you had your chance, we tried to get you to fund it. They are not describing a scenario that makes me want to give.
I would like to see the public hospital to stay public if at all possible and I just do not understand why the funds from the Sisters in the Netherlands was not fully pursued. Instead the rich turn to the poor to fund the hospital with their donations. I just don’t get it. The Sisters were attaching stipulations that may have interfered with plans to privatize the hospital.
I have no doubt the people of Cebu can rise to and meet the cause, but they need to be sure the hospital will stay public and they need to know that everything that could be done is being done. Why not pursue the funds where ever they come from? The Philippines needs outside dollars, this is another way to obtain that and improve the health care for everyone in Cebu. Make the hospital the best in Cebu and make the others compete with it.
Some information from The Cebu Daily News
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