The Department of Health-Calabarzon began conducting online oral health consultations and referral services through the “O-HI DOC” Project, an online dental consultation and scheduling of dental visits in Rural Health Units (RHU) with the use of the telemedicine platform.
“O-HI-DOC” stands for Oral Health Initiative for Dental Online Consultation. Every RHU in municipalities across Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon provinces will have an O-HI DOC unit that will be connected to the regional online referral system.
“This is in response to the COVID-19 pandemic for us to reach our clients and provide the necessary oral health services to the communities in the provinces, especially those in the geographically isolated and disadvantage areas and indigenous communities,” Regional Director Eduardo C. Janairo said during the launching at the regional office.
“Ngayong halos lahat ay online na, this is our way of reaching out and providing health service to the community. Responsibilidad natin na bantayan ang lanilang kalusugan lalo na ngayong mayroon tayong pandemya. Hindi sila dapat pabayaan at hindi dapat mahinto ang pagbibigay ng serbisyong pangkalusugan sa kanila,” Janairo emphasized.
The DOH-Calabarzon Oral Health Unit will conduct the teledentistry session and provide oral health consultation to residents of the region, especially those living in far-flung communities.
According to Regional Oral Health Outcome Manager Dr. Edwina J. Go, all patients seeking consultation must register and follow the simple steps provided to avail of the service.
“First, go to our Facebook page which is Facebook and click on the ‘Book Now’ button. The regional dentist on duty will then check the patient’s application as to what province he/she is from and will then contact the dentist at the provincial office who will refer the patient to the municipal dentist where he/she resides and will be the one to contact patient for the scheduled consultation,” Go said.
“If there are no dentists on duty, we will conduct the consultation at the regional level. Consultations will be done in real time through live video with the patient. In case the patient needs immediate special care or surgery, the dentists on duty will refer the patient to the nearest hospital,” she added.
As of September 17, a total of 43 patients registered online, with 17 given referrals, 2 inquired and 24 yet to reply.
“There are meaningful ways to do things and serve with the people’s interest in mind. Even if we are consumed with the COVID-19 pandemic, we must never stop. We must not forget our health concerns and responsibilities to our people,” Janairo pointed out.
The “O-HI DOC” Teledentistry Project is a collaboration of the Regional Oral Health Team and Health Accessibility Innovation and Development Unit (HAIDU). It was made possible through the leadership and sagacity of Regional Director Eduardo C. Janairo.