The Department of Health (DOH) has given a health center in Makati City the green light to operate as a primary health care facility.
The Palanan Health Center thus became the first 24/7 health center in Metro Manila to be granted a license by the national government.
Mayor Abigail Binay thanked the DOH, saying she was elated with the permit, indicating that the Palanan Health Center adheres to the standards mandated by the Universal Health Care Act.
“Primary health care facilities are essential, particularly in times of crisis such as the COVID-19 pandemic, because these centers provide the most inclusive, accessible, affordable, and efficient approach to enhancing people’s health,” Binay said.
The criteria for obtaining the license include patient rights and organizational ethics, patient care, leadership and management, human resource management, information management, safe practice and environment, performance, facilities, public access to information, and equipment and instruments.
Binay said her administration is currently upgrading two health centers in barangays Pitogo and Tejeros to obtain a license to operate as primary care facilities from the DOH.
“Palanan 24/7 will serve as the model for other barangay health centers in Makati to make health services more accessible to Makatizens. We are planning to upgrade other health centers soon so these can operate as primary care facilities,” the mayor said.
Established in 2014, Makati’s first 24-hour health center located in Palanan was meant to serve the local residents after other health centers closed by 5pm.
The Palanan Health Center has a clinical laboratory and a pharmacy. It also provides dental services, maternal and childcare, immunization, nutrition counseling, communicable and non-communicable disease prevention and control, reproductive health and family planning, tuberculosis prevention and control, minor surgical procedures, and elderly care.
At present, Makati has 27 health centers located in different barangays.
Under the Hospital Licensure Act, all hospitals and healthcare facilities are required to register and secure a license tooperate from the DOH to ensure the delivery of safe and quality primary care services to Filipinos.
The issuance of a license to primary care facilities is further strengthened through the implementing rules and regulations of the Universal Health Care Act of 2019. The license is a prerequisite to the accreditation of a health facility by an accrediting body of the DOH.
The Universal Health Care Act provides that all Filipinos will be automatically enrolled in PhilHealth and enjoy access to licensed primary health services.