HomeGood DeedInvesting in Community Health: SM Foundation and BDO Foundation’s Milestones in Healthcare...

Investing in Community Health: SM Foundation and BDO Foundation’s Milestones in Healthcare Improvement

The birthing facility in Brgy. Irawan, Palawan was given a new lease on life with the improvements done by SM Foundation, enabling the facility to secure necessary licenses to resume operations. SMIC photo.

Investing in healthcare has never been more important than now with the tough lessons of the recent pandemic.

One of these lessons revealed the vulnerability of health systems buckling under the strain of huge medical demands at the height of COVID-19. While the public and private sectors needed to step up, there is an even bigger need to anticipate, more than just respond to any future health crisis.

This brings to light the importance of access and what the private sector has been doing to help bridge the healthcare socio-economic gap. For SM and its foundations, this means better community access to quality primary healthcare in partnership with national and local governments.

Enhancing Community Access to Healthcare

SM Foundation (SMFI) has taken significant steps to provide better community access to quality primary healthcare. Partnering with national and local governments, SMFI’s medical missions deliver free consultations, basic laboratory tests, dental check-ups, and appropriate medications. This year alone, SMFI conducted over 1,600 medical missions, benefiting nearly 1.3 million patients.

“Patients who once endured long queues at crowded healthcare facilities now find relief as we bring healthcare services to remote barangays or provide them conveniently at our malls and properties,” said Connie Angeles, SM Foundation Executive Director for Health and Medical Programs.

Upgrading Health Facilities for Better Services

SM Foundation’s efforts go beyond medical missions. The foundation refurbishes rural health centers, transforming them into efficient and welcoming spaces. These centers now meet PhilHealth Accreditation standards, which boosts PhilHealth utilization and helps decongest city hospitals.

“These opportunities to rebuild health centers do more for human well-being. The refurbishment of public healthcare facilities not only enhance their capabilities by way of improvements and new equipment but also make these facilities more responsive and conducive to the health needs and recovery of those they serve,” Angeles added.

Case Studies: Impact of Renovations

  • Laguna’s 200th Rural Health Center: “Marami kaming programa na hindi namin malagyan ng lugar kasi kulang ang space kaya’t naghahagilap kami kung saan ito ipu-pwesto,” said Dr. Elmira Montesa of Santa Cruz Rural Health Unit (SCRHU). Following the Department of Health’s guidelines, SM Foundation upgraded SCRHU to include comfortable waiting areas, health worker reception areas, and facilities for breastfeeding mothers, the elderly, and persons with disabilities. A rainwater catchment system was also added.
  • UP-PGH Post-COVID & PulmoCare Hub: Before its renovation, UP-PGH struggled to meet the community’s needs. “PGH does have many donors but they have so many competing priorities, too. Those patients who continued to suffer from debilitating shortness of breath in silence still lacked essential services such as pulmonary rehabilitation equipment,” said Dr. Lenora Fernandez, chief of the Division of Pulmonary Medicine. The refurbished facility now features a new lobby, spacious rehabilitation rooms, and areas for various medical tests and virtual consultations.
  • Brgy. Irawan Birthing Facility: The birthing center, which serves thousands of residents and indigenous people, had to halt operations in 2018 due to non-compliance with health standards. “Kahit ilang kilometro ang layo nito sa mga kapwa ko katutubo, ito ang pinakamalapit na birthing facility dito sa aming lugar. Kaya malapit ang loob ng komunidad sa facility, lalo na ng mga kapwa ko katutubo. Noong kami ay nahinto, may mga pagkakataon na may nanganganak na sa loob ng sasakyan,” said midwife Narcisa Jagmis. SM Foundation revamped the facility, adding dedicated rooms and spaces for various medical needs and a rainwater harvesting system.

BDO Foundation’s Contributions

BDO Foundation achieved a milestone by rehabilitating its 160th rural health unit (RHU) in 2023. The renovations included exteriors, layout redesigns, and interior improvements such as new lobbies, waiting areas, and consultation rooms. This initiative helps health workers provide quality primary healthcare services efficiently.

Combined, the SM Foundation and BDO Foundation have refurbished and built a total of 364 health centers and medical facilities, contributing to Sustainable Development Goal 3 (Good Health & Wellbeing) by providing equitable access to quality basic services.

Be part of our vibrant Good News Pilipinas community, celebrating the best of the Philippines and our global Filipino heroes. As winners of the Gold Anvil Award and the Lasallian Scholarum Award, we invite you to engage with us and share your inspiring stories. For stories Making Every Filipino Proud, reach out to GoodNewsPilipinas.com via FacebookTwitterInstagramTikTokYouTube, and LinkedInLinkTree here. Let’s spread good news together!

Facebook Comments
The Good News Pilipinas Team
The Good News Pilipinas Team
The Good News Pilipinas Team is a group of Filipino journalists who advocate putting more good news stories about the Philippines and Filipinos on the media.

Get Your Dose of Good Vibes!

Power Up Your Positivity! Catch all the Good-Vibes! Join the GoodNewsPilipinas.com VIP list and get your daily dose of sunshine and Pinoy Pride! Unwrap stories that put Filipino awesomeness in your life! CLICK the subscribe button for our e-newsletter and turn your inbox into a fiesta of feel-good news! Inspire your day, fuel your pride! 🇵🇭✨

- Advertisment -

Top Stories