SEN. Bong Go (left) and Quezon Rep. David Suarez (third from left) lead the groundbreaking of the Lucena City General Hospital in Lucena City, Quezon. (FB photo)
BY BEN ROSARIO
Quezon Rep. David “Jayjay” Suarez is pushing for the decongestion of the lone government-run hospital in his province to strongly beef up its defenses against COVID-19 and other serious public health threats that may arise in future.
Suarez led Friday the groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the Lucena City General Hospital in Barangay Mayao, Lucena as he disclosed the implementation of several other public health projects in the province.
Funded through the initiative of Suarez and Alona party-list Rep. Anna Suarez, the completion of the LCGH will give the Quezon Medical Center breathing space as the new medical facility will decongest the lone public hospital in the entire Quezon province.
Although situated in Lucena City, the new hospital will be open to all Quezon constituents needing immediate healthcare, said Suarez.
The former Quezon governor said the COVID-19 pandemic experience has prompted him to quickly pursue the hospital project, stressing that this will better prepare the province in meeting the public health challenges posed by the dreaded pandemic.
Once fully operational, the 150-bed capacity of LCGH will greatly decongest the Quezon Medical Center – the only government hospital in the province, which has a 200-bed capacity and admits an average of 42, 269 patients yearly.
“The LCGH is a continuation of our strong commitment to modernize our healthcare system, and to be a national frontrunner of responding to the needs of our people,” Suarez said as he stressed the need to immediately decongest the QMC and swiftly make available to his constituents the best health care provision needed by them.
Suarez, currently assistant majority leader in the House, said the LCGH project is a part the advocacy for health protection and wellness that he and Rep. Anna, his wife, have strongly supported.
He noted that Rep. Anna has launched birthing centers in the province.
As a result of their public health efforts, Quezon province has been cited with numerous awards including, among others, the Green Banner Award of 2018 for outstanding Comprehensive Nutrition Program and the Galing Pook Award for LIngap sa Kalusugan/Health Coupon Award.
“Our program to expand and improve our existing healthcare system is proof of our commitment to responding to our province’s programs in deep and holistic ways possible,” Suarez said during the groundbreaking cerremony attended by provincial officials headed by Gov. Danilo Suarez, Vice Gov. Samuel Nantes, and Lucena City Mayor Roderick Alcala.
Sen. Christopher “Bong” Go delivered a message as the event’s guest speaker.
He lauded the provincial government for being proactive with its policies, which made it effective in handling the pandemic. “Our province, through the leadership of Gov. Danny and the provincial government, expanded many healthcare programs,” the lawmaker stated.
He said the provincial government has expanded the healthcare coupons so that they can be used in private hospitals.
Aside from the construction of a new hospital, Rep. Suarez’s programs include focus on First One Thousand Days of Life (Q1K), No Balance Billing, and funding for Barangay Nutrition Scholars, among others.