State-owned Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) has granted a
P450-million term loan to the provincial government of Camarines Norte for the expansion of medical facilities in the province to enhance its capacity to provide basic medical care to its constituents, a top official said.
DBP President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel G. Herbosa said part of the loan would be used to establish the new Sta. Elena District Hospital (SEDH) with the construction of a two-storey building with an initial bed capacity of 25 beds.
“DBP is honored to be a part of these initiatives of the Provincial Government which were pursued under the Bank’s Strategic Healthcare Investments for Enhanced Lending & Development (SHIELD) program,” Herbosa said. “We are one with the province in its aim to meet global health standards and improve services to the community.”
DBP is the eighth largest bank in the country in terms of assets and provides credit support to four strategic sectors of the economy – infrastructure and logistics; micro, small and medium enterprises; environment; social services and community development.
DBP SHIELD is a specially designed program that provides funding support to hospitals, laboratories, diagnostic centers, clinics, and primary care providers including pharmacies, family physician clinics, and the like that need to develop or construct and acquire health care facilities and equipment. As of end-April, DBP has approved
P18.2-billion in loans under the program.
Camarines Norte is a second-class province located in the northernmost part of the Bicol Region and has been dubbed as the gateway to Bicolandia. It has 12 municipalities and 282 barangays with a total population of more than 583,000 based on latest demographical data.
Herbosa said apart from the new SEDH, the loan proceeds would also be utilized for the construction of a new three-storey building for the Camarines Norte Provincial Hospital with an additional 50-bed capacity and a two-storey, 25-bed structure for Labo District Hospital as well as the purchase of various hospital equipment and machinery.
He said the new medical facilities would also allow the province to improve its bed-to-population ratio from 1:1178 to 1:989, which is within the World Health Organization’s standard of 1:1000.
“These new projects would be a boon to the province’s efforts to bolster its capability to address the health care concerns of its constituents including the prevailing national public health emergency,” Herbosa said.