May all public hospitals provide professional, efficient health care

My family and I had misgivings about bringing my father to the nearby Quezon City General Hospital on Jan. 27 to have him checked for what turned out to be a case of upper gastrointestinal tract bleeding.

Aside from the fact that Dad, a senior citizen, has been going mostly to his “comfort zone” private hospital within the city for most of his adult life, we were worried that the service at a public hospital might be below par.

But we ended up going to “QC Gen” as advised by my physician aunt, who urged us to be practical by taking advantage of its proximity and assured us of its quality service.

Now here I am writing to say that we’re glad we listened to her as our experience there was quite positive. To begin with, it wasn’t chaotic and crowded at all that late Saturday afternoon. Although there were other patients in the emergency section, it didn’t take that long for us to be attended to.

The two doctors who attended to my Dad—resident physician Isaac Joel Braga Palma and medical intern Mark Christian Iggaya—as well as the nurses, were very professional, which helped assuage the agony and concern I felt.

Our entire family (including aunts, uncles, and cousins in the province and abroad) are grateful to them all especially since Dad is feeling and looking much better now. I can only hope that every single Filipino experiences this kind of efficient, professional, and hassle-free service at any government hospital in whatever part of the country on any given day.

I agree with the Inquirer’s editorial “Making health care more affordable” (2/4/24): “The government needs to pour more resources into building more hospitals and equipping barangay health centers with better facilities and resources to provide health-care services to marginalized sectors who are discouraged from seeking professional help because of the cost …” and that, indeed, one very important and urgent Department of Health expenditure is “the construction of more provincial hospitals and specialty centers, as well as the improvement of health facilities that have suffered neglect due to inadequate budget.”

My utter distrust in this current government notwithstanding, I implore our leaders to keep the welfare of our country’s public health-care system and its medical and health-care professionals a top national priority, together with education.

After all, a healthy and educated citizenry can only be good for the Philippines.

Carl John Marino,