GENERAL SANTOS CITY: The provincial government of South Cotabato is targeting to fully operate in the next two months its own centralized dialysis and treatment center for kidney patients in Koronadal City.
Dr. Conrado Braña, chief of the South Cotabato Provincial Hospital (SCPH), said Monday the construction of the dialysis center building is ongoing within the facility and they expect its completion before the end of the month.
He said the needed equipment, especially the dialysis machines, is already on standby and will be installed once the structure is ready for occupancy.
The provincial government had allotted some PHP1.3 million for the construction of the dialysis center at the SCPH compound and PHP10 million for the purchase of 10 machines and other equipment.
“Once the setup is complete, we will then apply for a license-to-operate and that is the crucial part of the process,” Braña said in a program after the provincial government’s regular flag-raising ceremony.
He said they need to comply with all the requirements and pass the assessment of the Department of Health (DOH), through the Health Facilities and Services Regulatory Bureau, before they can operate the center.
This includes the proper setup of the facility and the hiring of the necessary specialists and other personnel, he said.
The official said they are currently scouting for a nephrologist or a doctor who specializes in kidney care and treating diseases of the kidneys to head the new department as required by the DOH.
He said they are currently facing problems with the recruitment of personnel for the facility due to the continuing coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic but said they are continually working to eventually hire the right people.
South Cotabato Governor Reynaldo Tamayo Jr. pushed for the establishment of the provincial government’s own dialysis center in 2019 to fulfill a campaign promise to provide free dialysis treatment to kidney patients in the province.
Around 400 dialysis patients are seeking financial assistance from the local government every month for their treatment.
The facility was initially targeted to operate in the third quarter last year but the construction of the building and the delivery of the procured dialysis machines were delayed due to the Covid-19 restrictions.