Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) and the Mercado Medical Group Inc. (MGHI) recently launched their newest facility in Southern Luzon, the QualiMed hospital in Nuvali, Sta Rosa in Laguna, a 102-bed healthcare center that offers inpatient and outpatient services.
The Nuvali facility, which houses the chain’s training and research center to sharpen the technical skills of Filipino health care teams, is part of the partnership’s business plan to invest over P5 billion to build a chain of hospitals and satellite clinics in the next five years under the healthcare brand, “QualiMed.”
The “QualiMed” brand debuted two years with the opening of a 180-square-meter satellite clinic at the TriNoma mall in Quezon City, the first of 10 satellite clinics in the pipeline. Since then, clinics have been opened in Mandurriao, Iloilo City, San Jose Del Monte in Bulacan, North Avenue in Fairview, Makati City, Diliman, Taguig City, and Cebu City.
1,000 beds in the next five years
MGHI has set up a parent hospital in Tanauan, Batangas City, which hosts the newborn screening reference center for Southern Luzon. In the pipeline is the QualiMed flasgship hospital, which will open in Cloverleaf, Balintawak in 20120.
On top of the smaller clinics that will provide outpatient services, the Ayala-Mercado partnership plans to develop 10 new hospitals to reach a total of capacity of at least 1,000 beds in the next five years.
“Our QualiMed joint venture supports our strategy of completing the offerings in our integrated mixed-use developments,” said Bernard Vincent Dy, ALI president and CEO. “They are being launched in most of our major communities, starting with Nuvali, Atria Iloilo, North Point Negros, and Altaraza Bulacan. For greater accessibility we will have satellite clinics like this first one in TriNoma.”
Dy noted that ALI’s estates are well-planned and continuously enhanced with developments that address the different needs of the market. “Health care is an important aspect that QualiMed has effectively delivered in our estates such as Iloilo and Bulacan,” he said,
“It has always been our vision as medical practitioners to provide quality medical care to as many Filipinos as we can possibly reach,” said Edwin Mercado, president of MGHI. “We are in the middle of the journey, and partnering with Ayala Land helped us take a big leap towards fulfilling this dream.
MGHI has almost six decades of experience in healthcare services. It pioneered an advanced multi-specialty, ambulatory surgical center in the UP Manila complex, and continues to operate the Daniel O. Mercado Medical Center in Batangas. It is recognized with a “Center for Excellence” seal by the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth).
Hefty capex, state-of-the-art facilities
Mercado revealed that each new hospital is built from scratch with a capacity of 100 to 150 beds, requiring an investment of around P500 million each. On the other hand, each satellite clinic will cost around P20 to P30 million to build. The projected outlays include the cost of property, fit-out and equipment.
QualiMed’s NUVALi hospital provides inpatient services that include admission in wards, semi-private and private rooms, intensive care facilities for adult and neonatal patients.
It has operating rooms and a pharmacy, and includes diagnostic equipment covering radiology, comprehensive laboratory, cardiovascular, pulmonary, physical medicine and rehabilitation, a dialysis and intravenous chemotherapy center, emergency room, surgical and minimally invasive surgery, an eye diagnostic and laser center, and industrial and occupational healthcare services, among others.
Holistic approach to health care
“We want to change the traditional way Filipinos view healthcare; that we should consult with doctors only when we are sick,” said Mercado. “QualiMed advocates a more holistic approach to health care. We promote primary, preventive and promotive care. One should not take care of his health only when he is already too weak to even see a doctor.”
“Having formed a local mediical team that is embedded in the community is a big plus in terms of the kind of ‘genuine Filipino care’ that we will provide in CALABARZON,” said Atty. Nirmala Vanguardia, chief operating officer of AqualiMed Nuvali.
“We owe it to our patients to provide them the best care and outcomes possible,” added Dr. Albert Tiotuyco, director of the QualiMed Training and Research Center (QTRC). “Using the best healthcare systems, technologies and best practices from around the world, we want to provide comprehensive and industry-approved medical and technical training activities to our doctors and medical personnel.”
Organized, cozy set up
QualiMed Nuvali is definitely an organized, cozy and relaxed set up. Built into ALI’s fast-growing mixed-use development, it is envisioned to enhance the quality of life in the community, where even residents near the development can benefit from the inclusion of healthcare facilties in a strategic and accessible area.
“We’re investing in infrastructure,” said Dy. “We can design it, build it, design it up to current standards now. A lot of the hospitals we have currently have older facilities, they’re not wired for a local network. We don’t have that problem. We can deliver a different type of healthcare at an affordable price.”
The healthy partnership between ALI and MGHI is geared towards one goal: to improve the quality of life of the marginalized Filipinos. Fitting, since those who have less in life should ostensibly have more in healthcare.