By James A. Loyola
The Ayala Group of Companies, led by Ayala Healthcare Holdings, Inc. (AC Health), has partnered with Qualimed Health Network to convert Qualimed Sta. Rosa, Laguna into a COVID-19 Referral Hospital.
The agreement was signed last April 20, 2020 between Qualimed, represented by Dr. Edwin Mercado, President and CEO, and the AC Health Leadership team led by President and CEO Paolo Borromeo and Chief Finance Officer Ruby Chiong.
“We believe this partnership with Dr. Mercado comes at a critical time during this health crisis when access to care has become constrained. We’ve come together at the Ayala Group to support this project so that patients can have a facility to go to, especially during these difficult times,” said Borromeo.
The project was made possible through contributions from various Ayala Group companies, including Ayala Corporation, Ayala Foundation, Ayala Land, BPI Foundation, AC Energy, Manila Water, Globe, IMI, and AC Motors.
“I look forward to work¬ing together with AC Health, and the rest of the Ayala Group, to further build the capabilities of our hospital,” said Dr. Mercado.
He explained that, “As a referral institution, the facility will be compliant with infection control standards to ensure the safety of patients and medical professionals. It also aims to expand screen¬ing and testing more broadly to contribute to public health control efforts.”
With this partnership, the hospital will expand its capabilities to manage more patients as a full-scale COVID-19 Referral Hospital through the building of a COVID-19 triage holding area adjacent to Qualimed Sta. Rosa.
Also to be completed is a Biosafety Level 2 Laboratory capable of COVID-19 testing, conversion of inpatient beds for exclusive use of COVID-19 patients, expansion of the hospital’s current ICU-bed capacity, and the forming of a dedicated team of medical professionals, including volunteer clinical staff from the broader Qualimed, FamilyDOC and Healthway networks.
At present, Qualimed Sta. Rosa is already open to receiving COVID-19 referrals, and upgraded facilities will be opened in phases beginning May 1.
“Beating COVID-19 requires a collective effort, and Qualimed Sta. Rosa will be partnering with other hospitals and local government units for COVID referrals,” said Borromeo.
He added that, “We are deeply grateful to the frontliners at Sta. Rosa and the other healthcare professionals from the rest of the Qualimed Health Network, our FamilyDOC and Healthway clinics, and other affiliate hospitals, who have volunteered to be part of this initiative.
“We continue to extend this invitation to the rest of the medical community too, to join our team. This partnership is just one of the many ways that we are hoping to bring much-needed healthcare services to more Filipinos,” said Borromeo.