The City Health Office has conducted medical mission in lumad communities in the barangays of Lanca, Luban, and Cabuaya in the City of Mati over the weekend.
The medical mission is in partnership with the Southern Philippines Medical Center, Department of Health, Social Concerns Foundation and Halad Mission Group Foundation.
Mati City Health Officer Dr. Ben Hur Catbagan Jr. said the activity is in compliance to the Joint Memorandum Circular 2018-65 of the Department of Health, the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples and the Department of Interior and Local Government which aim to address the access, utilization, coverage and equity issues in the provision of basic health care services for Indigenous Cultural Communities/Indigenous Peoples to achieve better health outcomes.
The City of Mati, led by Mayor Michelle Nakpil Rabat, engaged the Halad Mission Group Foundation assisted by the City Health Office in holding a minor surgical, dental, eye screening, maternal and child nutrition outreach for indigenous people at Geographically Isolated and Disadvantaged Areas (GIDA) barangays namely Lanca, Luban and Cabuaya.
The mission aims to offer free minor surgical and dental procedures to the indigenous people of the GIDA barangays.
Other activities done were the prenatal checkup with free laboratory tests prioritizing high risk and teen age pregnancies; evaluation and treatment of malnourished children and cataract screening of senior citizens for eventual navigation to service provider with no out of pocket expenditures from the patients, thereby achieving financial risk protection for them.
The Halad Mission Group Foundation, represented by its president , Dr. Rolley Rey P. Lobo, initiated the holding of the surgical outreach through engagements with the City Health Office , several stakeholders and cooperating agencies from the government.
Master listing of prospective clients was managed by the GIDA barangays health teams, weeks before the outreach proper. Priority population based health services and programs such as High risk and teen age pregnancy tracking, management of severe acute malnutrition, national immunization program, and cataract screening were also integrated as part of the outreach.
Arrangements with the mission venue team were finalized, focusing on sharing of resources on supplies, medicines, security, food and accommodations of volunteers, most notable of which is the able hosting of the Barangay Cabuaya led by Punong Barangay Renato Lemente.
Final screening was done at the mission venue followed by the actual performance of procedures and other services /programs.
A total of 138 patients were served thru the medical mission with services ranging from cyst excisions, screening for major and medium surgeries, screening for eye surgery, prenatal, dental, and flouridation.
Dr. Catbagan said that the Outreach Activity is a clear example of enhancing access of the indigenous people in the geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas to quality health services.
“Holding of such outreach activities for the underserved populations annually through the Re-tooled Community Support Program (RCSP) would help fill the gaps in Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The outreach is the best team building activity for the City Team and other stakeholders with high impact on the communities,” said Catbagan. (CIO MATI)