Medical And Dental Outreach Serve 13,000 People In Baganga

By Ferdinand Zuasola 

As the provincial government kicks off its annual medical and dental outreach program for all villages of the province, at least 13,000 residents of this first-class municipality, majority of them are indigent patients, has already benefited from the program that give free door-to-door medical services even to the remotest hinterland villages of the province.

Davao Oriental Governor Corazon Malanyaon says the successful three-day medical and dental outreach in this town was being participated by 26 medical doctors that include dentists and at least thirty other medical practitioners like nurses, midwives, barangay health workers and nutrition scholars who volunteered their services for free. The governor hailed the medical and dental teams here for their “selfless efforts of saving the lives of the poor.” She then urged the residents here to always include in their prayers the well-meaning medical practitioners who volunteered their services for free to the poor.

“This activity directly serves my constituents especially the highly impoverished living in remote hinterland villages who cry for our compassionate care. They have limited or no access to quality health care. What we are doing is we are giving free medical door-to-door consultations and we are giving away free medicines in the barangays.  And patients who need confinement and further medication are referred to hospitals. This medical and dental outreach is a yearly activity in every municipality and city in Davao Oriental. This is part of the health care program of the provincial government,” says Governor Malanyaon.

The province of Davao Oriental has five hospitals located in the municipalities of Cateel, Manay, Lupon, Governor Generoso and the City of Mati. Three of these hospitals are primary hospitals and one is a secondary hospital. The tertiary hospital is located in the province’s capital, the City of Mati. All of the five government-run hospitals here have licenses from the Department of Health and accreditation from the PhilHealth.  The province has eleven Rural Health Units spread in ten towns and one city.

“This medical and dental outreach is an opportunity to address serious and immediate concerns of the barangays, an opportunity to work closely with other service providers like the barangay and municipal local government units, national government agencies, the Philippine National Police and the Philippine Army. This is also an opportunity for me to look into the projects of the provincial government in the barangays particularly the barangay roads, water systems, barangay health centers and electrification. I want to know if these development programs are being properly implemented,” adds the governor.

“From the start of my involvement in public service, I have taken it both as my personal and official commitment to ensure that my constituents are provided with, at the very least, basic health care. We will continue to expand our preventive health care program and continue to justly provide programs that will build up the poor.  The right to life is an inviolable human right. A healthy nation is a progressive nation. A government that cannot provide its people with adequate health care system has no reason for its existence. I have always been guided by this philosophy,” says Governor Malanyaon who was earlier awarded by the Philippine Hospital Association as the outstanding governor in the country for pushing a meaningful health care program for the poor.

Aside from the medical and dental outreach program in the barangays, Governor Malanyaon is also regularly sponsoring big surgical missions in the province. “The surgical mission is intended for the poor patients who cannot afford the highly prohibitive cost of medicines and medical services of the private hospitals. And I am very thankful that we have lots of kind-hearted and tireless medical doctors who fully support my program because their heart bleeds for the poor patients,” says the governor. During this year’s Halad Surgical Mission here that served at least five hundred indigent patients stricken with various deadly illnesses, Governor Malanyaon has made sure that not one of the patients would shell out even a single centavo for the cost of the surgery. And aside from free surgery, the patients were also provided with free medicines, free food and transportation.

“It is our obligation, especially to the poor patients, to save lives. To save lives especially of the hapless poor is so rewarding. I have been doing this for so many years already and it feels like I am healed too after healing the sick poor for free. And I am very happy for it,” says one of the volunteer doctors here who refused to be identified “Because I don’t like to publicize what I am doing because it will only defeat the real purpose of charity which is to extend a helping hand to fellow men who badly needs our help without the glare of the public.”

During the first leg of the just concluded three-day medical and dental outreach here, volunteer medical practitioners have trooped  to the following barangays of Baganga town:  Bobonao, Mahan-ub, Baculin, Saoquegue, Batawan, Batiano, Binondo, Lucod, Campawan, Dapnan, Mikit, San Victor, San Isidro, Ban-ao, Poblacion, Kinablangan, Salingkomot and Lambajon. The medical team has served a total of 11,769 residents while the dental team served 1,286 people. Dr. Joy Sanico who heads the medical and dental outreach program of the province says the same activity will soon be conducted in the towns of Boston, Cateel, Caraga, Manay, Tarragona, San Isidro, Governor Generoso, Banaybanay, Lupon and in the City of Mati.

The provincial government’s holistic approach to health care services include the following programs:

1.     The Madayaw Health Care Program.

2.     The nutrition, supplemental feeding, and bright child program.

3.     The preventive medicine, medical outreach, and surgical mission programs.



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