The legacy and identity of a hospital, especially a hospital as important as The Medical City which is one of the largest healthcare providers in the country, can be determined by how it pushed all of its buttons to respond to health crises and emergencies. With the right measures implemented at the right time, combined with its long-standing mindset of serving patients, The Medical City continues to chart its course on the right side of history.
During the conversation the Manila Bulletin recently had with Lawrence Sibayan, assistant vice president for relationship management and business development at The Medical City, there were words he mentioned repeatedly, no. not for the simple fact of redundancy, but to emphasize what the medical institution was. all over the past year – reminding Filipinos “not to delay health care”.
In the onslaught of the pandemic and as COVID-19 infections continue to rise, many people were reluctant to visit hospitals, either because they were afraid of acquiring the virus when they went out, or because ‘they believed doctors and frontline people should focus on treating COVID-19 patients more. The Medical City addressed this issue because it managed to strike a balance between accommodating COVID-19 patients and other health issues, with the launch of “One Complex, Two Hospital Systems” in April 2020.
“A month after the coronavirus was declared a pandemic, we did what we call the Complex One, two hospital systems that provided COVID-19 patients with isolated areas and separate secure access for non-COVID-19 patients. who need consultation, diagnostic tests, intervention, and disease management. This is one of the first initiatives in the industry to dedicate exclusive pathways to each patient, ”said Sibayan.
“We have resources entirely dedicated to COVID and non-COVID patients, and this is to encourage people to always come to the hospital, and that option always remains,” he added.
The Medical City‘s two-in-one hospital system is part of the institution’s COVID-19 coping strategies, which Sibayan says primarily include digital transformation efforts to further improve the way it delivers healthcare. health to more patients.
“We accelerated the adoption of digital services as we quickly had to pivot, moving service delivery online and remotely. Our digital transformation has not only focused on telemedicine but also electronic medical records and hospital information systems. The goal is to integrate all of these systems to provide a seamless experience for our patients, ”he said.
With digital transformation applied to crucial parts of The Medical City’s day-to-day operations, the institution is also effectively and efficiently reaching out to patients who do not want to leave the comfort of their own homes but would like to have access to the best healthcare option available to them. health available.
Sibayan said it was a question of how, when patients cannot come to the hospital, the hospital will go to them, and The Medical City has done so by strengthening its telemedicine and health care services. remote health.
Currently, The Medical City is among the hospitals in the country with the most comprehensive services available online. Through its website, patients can be put in contact with doctors at the diabetes center, breast center, cancer center, institute of wellness and aesthetics, endoscopy center and physiological studies, Cardiac and Peripheral Vascular Center, Occupational Therapy, Movement Disorders Clinic, Lactation Center, DOTS Unit, Center for Snoring and Sleep Disorders, as well as other medical services which will be available digitally in the future.
“Where possible, we make all TMC services available on our online platform. We’ve mapped out the patient’s journey, from finding a doctor to making an appointment and paying, booking diagnostic tests and even delivering medication, it’s all part of the experience. of the patient, ”said Sibayan.
The brick-and-mortar clinics will no longer house hospital beds, as care will be transferred to patients’ homes. Technology – and in particular the Internet of Medical Things – will enable consumers to take charge of their well-being.
“The delivery of health services is no longer limited to the brick-and-mortar hospital, as care will be transferred to patients’ homes. It’s just as important to be present online, and I think it could actually be a step towards the first virtual hospital in the Philippines, ”he added.
Meanwhile, for its remote care services, The Medical City has its “On-Wheels” program which includes laboratory and cardiac tests, vaccine administration, physical therapy and rehabilitation for patients residing in the city. Metro Manila and parts of Rizal Province.
“We have our nurses and paramedical associates who come to patients’ homes so that they don’t miss their diagnostic, preventive and rehabilitation procedures. And that complements the hospital’s telemedicine services, ”said Sibayan.
When asked about the reception of patients with the online and remote health services of The Medical City, the official said he saw promising results, a positive development, especially given the mistrust of some people in – view of telehealth before the pandemic.
“The implementation of telemedicine was delayed, before the pandemic, for various reasons, including repeated and persistent resistance, as some believe these do not really provide the same level of service as face-to-face consultations. “Sibayan said.
“Timing is really everything. We have had a very good response from our patients because the service is available when and where they need it. Many of our patients are grateful that these services [The Medical City’s online and remote healthcare solutions] are now available, and some of them didn’t really think it could be possible, ”he added.
“Learn from experience”
In the ongoing struggle against an unknown and evolving enemy, The Medical City counts its experiences as the agent of essential lessons and lessons. As the Philippines grapples with a new wave of COVID-19 infections with the more worrying Delta and other emerging variants, The Medical City can count on its controls, protocols, systems and processes it has developed to take better care of COVID-19 patients.
“I would say that, compared to the first wave, we have already developed knowledge and experience of the COVID-19 response that we have gained through our research and infection prevention and control practices. We are now better prepared for surges, ”said Sibayan.
He mentioned that with hospitals back at full capacity, The Medical City continues to use its COVID Home Care service. Partnered with Home Healthlink Innovations, Inc., it ensures that patients suspected or positive for COVID-19 with mild and moderate symptoms are closely monitored and monitored by a physician while they recover their health at home.
“Because we have these services in place, we are now able to also treat mild and mildly moderate COVID-19 cases without patients having to fight for beds in the hospital. We are offering them an alternative solution through our COVID home care, ”continued Sibayan, adding that The Medical City has also obtained approval from the Food and Drug Administration to authorize Remdesivir, an antiviral drug for COVID-19 patients initially authorized. to be administered only in hospitals. , to be administered remotely.
The Medical City has also initiated a partnership with the Ministry of Health as well as with local government units, as they support the authorities’ efforts related to COVID-19. For example, Sibayan said TMC has formed an alliance with major hospitals in Metro Manila for a collective call to designate public hospitals as COVID-19 hubs.
“I would say The Medical City has played its part in the public health emergency and the delivery of public health itself,” he said.
Find out how The Medical City can help you take care of your health via https://online.themedicalcity.com/online-services.
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