We walked around a private tertiary hospital today. The outside is nice; there is a fountain and a place to drive up and drop off people. When we get inside, the first thing I notice is the marble everywhere. Here this facility offers a huge range of services: cancer treatments, dialysis, everything you would expect in a hospital. I’m sure Philippine General had those services as well, but I did not see them there to compare.
As we walk around, I notice there are more monitors for patients in the emergency room and even see a hospital bed like the one in the U.S. On the floors, the admitted patients each have their own private room. We pass by a hospital room right when the door opens and I catch a glimpse of wood paneling on the wall. Alec said he saw a T.V. and other amenities like in the U.S. The difference is clear. Anyone would be more comfortable here at the private hospital and if you have the money, you would spend it. Even the public/charity care part of the hospital is nicer, as shown in this picture:
We also have the unique opportunity to go to the World Health Organization Western Pacific Regional Office WHO-WPRO which happens to be located in Manila. The western Pacific region has 37 member states, from Australia to Tokelau. The WHO-WPRO works with the health minister of each country to set world norms and standards to define what is basic care. They also receive extra money from other member states, like South Korea, in return they have to report to the health ministry of that country
While this region faces similar health challenges as the rest of the world, some of their unique challenges include communicable diseases, neglected tropical diseases and health emergencies. The WHO-WPRO’s role is to create policies that will help with these health challenges. After drafting these policies, they must be approved by the member states; this is essential, otherwise the WHO will not work. As you can imagine, it is hard to create policies that balance cultural values in the region with science and best practices.