Hike in bed capacity of Baguio hospital backed

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City officials expressed their strong support for the immediate passage of House Bill (HB) No. 10451 that seeks to increase the bed capacity of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center (BGHMC) from eight hundred to one thousand five hundred beds and appropriating funds for the said purpose.

Under Resolution No. 161, series of 2022, local legislators acknowledged the relevance of increasing the bed capacity of BGHMC which is one of the major referral hospitals not only in the city but also in Northern Luzon that caters to complexed health care services because of the presence of experts from various fields of the medical profession that use the said facility as their base hospital for their patients.

Republic Act (RA) 11084 which previously increased the bed capacity of BGHMC from the previous 500 to 800 beds and provided funds for the said purpose was enacted on July 23, 2018 to ensure the aggressive promotion of available equipped health facilities in the city capable of providing general and specialized medical services among its catchment population from Baguio City, Benguet, the Cordillera and the Northern Luzon area.

The body claimed that the recent increase in bed capacity has allowed the BGHMC to expand its services and capacitated its manpower to serve as the only Level 3 hospital, Department of health retained hospital and serving as an in-referral hospital situated in the city and catering to patients coming from the rest of Northern Luzon.

In 2021, DOH Department Order No. 2021-0001 designated BGHMC as sub-national center for infectious disease and tropical medicine, orthopedics, renal care and transplant, brain and spine care, cancer care, eye care, lung care, mental health, trauma care and toxicology and regional center for cardiovascular care, bone care, geriatric care, neonatal care, and physical rehabilitation medicine.

To support the implementation of the aforesaid centers and to enable BGHMC to expand its services and accommodate the influx of patients coming from the Cordillera and the neighboring provinces in Northern Luzon, HB 10451 was filed in the House of Representatives where the same was approved on November 23, 2021 during the 17th Congress and transmitted on the same day to the Senate of the Philippines which conducted public hearings on September 7, 2021 and March 22, 2022 with positive results.

Prior to 2010, the bed capacity of the BGHMC had been increased from 300 to 500 beds that paved the way for the eventual identification of the said health facility as a major referral hospital in Northern Luzon.

During the height of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the health department designated BGHMC as one of the first five sub-national testing centers that paved the way for the establishment of a molecular laboratory in the said health facility.

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