Despite incurring financial losses over the past seven years, the ailing Laoag City General Hospital (LCGH) will continue and recover in due time.
Mayor Michael Marcos Keon assured this on Wednesday as he opposed the declaration of bankruptcy of the city government-run hospital in order to get rid of the financial burden.
Currently, the hospital is manned by 94 permanent employees and almost 100 contract service personnel.
The LCGH has been in “bad health” with more than PHP78 million in total debt when Keon assumed as mayor of Laoag in 2019.
Following a public hearing attended by hospital personnel and members of the city council on May 23, Keon has asked for more time to free the hospital from incurring more debts.
“We are not declaring bankruptcy. We will do all ways to save the LCGH. Just give us time to recover,” said Keon in a statement.
Financial record shows that from 2017 to 2022, the Laoag Hospital has been struggling with a net loss of more or less PHP50 million annually.
During the hearing, Dr. Marsha Lou Wapan and Dr. Mary-Ann Luis from the Laoag City General Hospital reported that there are hospital equipment such as dialysis machines, CT scan, 2D echo machine, anesthesia machine, medical oxygen generating machine, ECG machine, and other laboratory equipment that are no longer functioning, hence the number of patients going to the said hospital has declined over the years.
Shortages of medicines and medical supplies were also reported because the practice of the consignment system was red-flagged by the Commission on Audit.
To aid the hospital operation, the office of Ilocos Norte (1st District) Rep. Ferdinand Alexander Marcos has downloaded a total of PHP30 million from the Medical Assistance to Indigent Patients (MAIP) program of the Department of Health.
As of this posting, the local chief executive has declined to elaborate further about his concrete plans to save the hospital but he assured help is underway to make the hospital run smoothly again.
For now, cost-cutting measures are being practiced at the hospital to help reduce the financial burden. (PNA)