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Liver transplants MoA signed

Elmer N. Manuel @tribunephl_lmer

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The Department of Health (DoH) recently signed a memorandum of agreement (MoA) with the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (PCMC) and The Medical City (TMC) to perform pediatric liver transplantations in the country at the Premier Guest House in Malacanang.

No less than Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go witnessed the signing of the MoA which states that the government hospital will identify qualified patients, the private hospital will perform the transplants and the DoH will reimburse the expenses through the PCMC, among other stipulations.

In his speech, the senator – who is also the Senate Committee on Health chairman – said that President Rodrigo Duterte decided to develop liver transplantations in the country due to their experience in helping Filipino children with biliary atresia, a liver disease that usually requires a liver transplant for the patient to survive.

The President and Go have been sending the children abroad, usually in India, for the transplants.

He likened the consortium with the Malasakit Center, which helps indigent patients receive financial and medical assistance from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), DoH, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).

As what happened with the consortium, the President decided to establish Malasakit Centers upon the recommendation of Go, who consulted government officials and health practitioners.

He also said that the consortium is a short-term solution to the growing cases of Filipino children with biliary atresia.

The proposed long-term solution, on the other hand, is capacitating the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) by procuring the necessary equipment for it, improving its facilities and sending its specialists to Taiwan to be trained at the Kaohsiung Chang-Gung Memorial Hospital (KCGMH).

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