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Mendero Medical Center: Finally, a tertiary hospital to serve Cebu's northern towns

Consolacion and North Cebu will soon welcome a general hospital within their reach.

The 2nd Globe Cebu media Excellence Awards

Yours truly was a finalist of the 2nd Globe Cebu media Excellence Awards.

Two from a Cebu medical school top the boards, 100 percent passing for said medical school

Two students from the same medical schoolin Cebu topped the medical board exams.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

A glimpse of University of Cebu Medical Center and School of Medicine

As I took my first good look at the University of Cebu Medical Center, fondly called UCMed, I can't help but smile. Somehow I have a good feeling about this hospital-to-be and the medical school that comes with it.

First the hospital.

Going inside the feel is that of a hotel. There are escalators going to the second floor. The place just looks modern.So relaxing. So fresh.

The Main Lobby

View from the outside
Take a glimpse of the admitting section below...

And the smiles of the people and welcoming committee from's a good sign that this hospital, though modern with state-of-the-art equipment and facilities, will really cater and be welcoming also to the masses as its owners are known for. Look at their legacy and it shows -- Elizabeth Mall, Cebu Coliseum, University of Cebu and now, UCMed and University of Cebu (UC) School of Medicine.

 On the 6th floor, the view is breathtaking...

There's Cebu Doctors' University from the view above UCMED
And the majestic building with a logo that I truly like ... with good name recall, branding...very medical...simple but modern.

Here are some of the wards with no beds yet...

President Benigno S. Aquino III inspected the hospital May 1, 2015 and the pictures where you can see some high tech equipment are in the Official Facebook page of the Official Gazette of the Republic of the Philippines. You can check it out here.

I think the hospital will soon have its soft opening within this year. What is really definite though is UC's medical school is going to start this coming schoolyear. The glimpse I will give you of the school is more on the faculty and not of the building. Let me show you some of them in this next photograph.

Some of the future Faculty of the University of Cebu School of Medicine
The person 2nd to the left of the photo (the one next to me in the pic) is the dean, Dr. Melfer Montoya. And with her UC School of Medicine is definitely in good hands.

She is a Biochemistry mentor and classmate of mine in our Masters Degree in Health Professions Education (MHPEd) which we took in the University of the Philippines Manila. MHPEd is like a degree in education for teachers but in our case, specifically for health professions teachers (like that in a medical school). In MHPEd, we take these subjects which will definitely help Dr. Montoya in her stint as dean. In some instances already, those with MHPEd are nominated as deans or chancellors in colleges like that in UP Manila. And with Dr. Montoya's degree, her many many years as a medical educator plus experience in being part of the administration of a PAREF school in Cebu, University of Cebu School of Medicine is in capable hands with the help of the administration and rest of the faculty.

Check some of the basic faculty:
Photo of Freeman newspaper page showing some of the members of the UC School of Medicine Faculty
As you can see in the newspaper, you have the "veterans" perhaps considered the Mothers or Father in Cebu of the particular subject they are teaching. Dr. Virginia Mesola is the authority in Medical Microbiology in Cebu both in classroom, laboratory and in practice. Ask a graduate who was under Dra. Llenes in Anatomy and definitely she will be pointed as one of the best Anatomy teachers in Cebu medical schools. Dr. Francisco Tan knows histology and anatomy even with his eyes closed being in the department for more than a decade. The rest of the teachers is a good mix of vast experience, passion and youth ensuring continued quality medical education in the future.

As I sit watching guests coming in wishing UCMed well last May 1, I could not help but smile.  I realized that this development is really good for healthcare in Cebu. Furthermore, the city hospitals will be decongested. And another promising medical school will be added to the other quality medical schools in Cebu. By the way, the school of medicine campus is in Banilad in their building across Gaisano Countrymall. Information about application for first year medical student is in this page. Deadline for application is May 15, 2015.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Thanks to Smiling Kidneys Club Supporters

As promised, the Smiling Kidneys Club, a hemodialysis patients support group would like to thank their generous supporters in this page who have helped the group in one way or the other.

Dr. Monteclar, Dr. Mata, Stephen thru Mr. Talaba, the Talaba Family, Rose Ann, Mrs. Rodrigo, Drs. Francisco and Carmela Remotigue, Engr. James Topaz, Dr. F. Berdin, Dr. Pia Quinones.

Thank you and may God bless you a hundredfold.

As of now, we are planning activities primarily to educate patients and their families regarding how to deal with their condition positively.

On February 23 11 AM (Sunday), hemodialysis patients of Asia Renal Care 1 Cebu will be listening to a short lecture on Calcium/Phosphorus to be delivered by nephrologist Dr. John Li. This activity is organized by the Smiling Kidneys Club with the help of the Asia Renal Care 1 family.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Is there value in using social media for healthcare in the Philippines?

During last week's #HealthXPh Hangout on Air (HOA), network connection difficulties prevented me from participating for the entire duration of the HOA. So I decided to put here my answers to the questions posted last week regarding social media's value in healthcare in the Philippine context.

T1: Is there value in using social media for healthcare in the Philippines?

It's a big YES for me especially that we Filipinos are supposedly one of the top users of social media in the entire globe. A lot of people can be reached via social media especially when telecommunications companies are beginning to offer free use of social networking sites.

Social media offers an avenue for

  • communication
  • collaboration
  • information gathering and sharing
It also has a multiplying effect as posts get shared via social bookmarks and other social media tools reaching more and more people. In my observation though, not many local doctors are tapping social media for healthcare purposes.

T2: What social media tools do I use for healthcare and how do I use them?

I use blogs first and foremost. My PKD blog documents my experiences not as a healthcare professional but as a patient in the hopes that my readers who have PKD may learn something out of it as they cope with PKD. As a public health advocate and healthcare professional, I blog also about public health topics as well as inform health professionals of coming medical events in my other blogs.

I use Facebook in various ways both as a patient and healthcare professional.

I have a Facebook support group for hemodialysis patients. I read and share health articles. I engage my students (future physicians) by posting points to ponder or points to reflect upon. As a patient, believe it or not, Facebook is where I get a lot of moral support as well as financial support thru crowdfunding. I connect also with others using Facebook.

Googleplus is where I also share my health blog articles to reach more people.

Instagram is where I post pics that would help inspire other hemodialysis patients to remain having a positive outlook despite their illness. It is where I post also pictures with messages.

Twitter is also where I connect to people with similar  interests, people I look up to, model health professionals and persons of influence. Twitter is also where I get the fresh medical and social media updates, health news, health researches and many more. Of course, it is also an avenue to share opinions as well as have meaningful conversations like in #HealthXPh tweetchat.

T3: Do you think there should be guidelines for social media use in healthcare institutions?

With the importance of patient privacy, yes there should be guidelines. With location easily tracked or determined in social media plus the date given, even without mentioning names, a patient can easily be identified with just a few details or a revealing photograph needed when patients and their cases are discussed online.

Now that we know the value of social media in healthcare, I am inviting healthcare professionals including doctors to use social media not only for personal use but also for improving healthcare.

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