MANILA Health Secretary Enrique Ona on Thursday reiterated his assurance that there will be no privatization of hospitals being run by his department but "is bringing certain private practices to improve efficiency and availability of public services that otherwise will take a long time or, maybe, we will not have that kind of resources at all."
Ona also said that health workers should not take any action that will disrupt their jobs or hospital operations. He cautioned them that if they want to protest then they can only do that from 12 noon to 1:00 p.m.
He also stressed to them not to forget that they are government workers.
He made the reminder to health workers as around 1,000 of them nationwide "walked out" of their jobs to oppose the "privatization" of DOH-run hospitals.
The health workers have left their stations during the lunch break from noon to 1:00 p.m. to stage a rally in front of their respective hospitals to denounce the privatization of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicines (RITM) and Philippine Orthopedic Center.
According to Lovely Tanghal, media officer of Alliance of Health Workers (AHW), they could not be appeased by the repeated pronouncements of the DOH that the privatization of hospitals would lead to improvement of services, thus, benefiting the patients.
"They are claiming that hospitals will not be privatized but some of its services like laboratories will be passed on to the private sectors. Whichever way, it won't be good to patients," she noted in an interview.
Tanghal added the private sector would not invest in hospitals if they would not have any financial gains.(PNA)