Published by the Visayan Daily Star Publications, Inc.
|NINFA R. LEONARDIA|
Editor-in-Chief & President
NIDA A. BUENAFE
MAJA P. DELY
ANTONIO L. LEONARDIA|
Probably one of the most obnoxious proposals made in the House of Representatives of the Philippines is the privatization of government hospitals, and Filipinos all over the country should be glad that the move has been roundly condemned by a great portion of the citizenry.
We are often appalled at the fact that our country, compared to so many others, is not providing adequate health care and provisions for those who are sick and do not have the means to pay for medical assistance, hospitalization and even for the necessary and prescribed medication.
As it is, their only hope are the government hospitals that, despite their meager financing, manage to provide the poor with some degree of care and treatment they would otherwise never be able to avail of.
The proponents of the so-called corporatization of government hospitals talk about improving services and enabling such establishments to acquire more sophisticated equipment to be used in treating patients. They also talk about enabling them to earn enough to sustain their operations without relying on the national coffers.
From the term “corporatization” alone, one can discern that these hospitals will be run just like the heartless and money-obsessed ones where, admittedly one can enjoy the best professional care and treatment. But it also means that one has to pay through the nose, if one has the money at all.
There are far too many government agencies already that are supposed to be making money that should sustain government hospitals and enable them to serve the country’s underprivileged people. There are banks, corporations, agencies that make a lot of money which, as shocking exposés later showed, had only gone to graft and corruption, if not outright theft perpetrated by their unscrupulous officials.
The example of existing so-called corporatized hospitals with specializations have shown clearly how inaccessible they have become to the supposed beneficiaries of government hospitals. Let us demand from our congressmen and senators that they junk that move to privatize government hospitals. That is, if they are not being hypocritical again in their feigned love and concern for their country’s poor.*