By Ric Obedencio | 08:23 AM February 20, 2023

The heart station of Gov. Celestino Gallares Memorial Medical Center (GCGMMC) may soon perform heart procedures, aside from serving foreign tourists, but foremost, to all Boholanos, Dr. Elleen Cunanan, head of the cardiovascular unit, said.

“At this point, not only will we be able to take pride in our world class tourism, but we can even hopefully boast of cardiac care that is truly up to standard, that will not only benefit the privileged few, tourist even, both foreign and local but definitely extend to all Boholanos,” she said in her explanation of the heart center services and personnel.

Dr. Cunanan said that the launching of the heart center is carried out for the fact that cardiovascular diseases “consistently take top spot in causes of morbidity and mortality, not only in the Philippines, but worldwide.”

Heart diseases are one of the top leading causes of death in the country, Department of Health confirmed.

Cardiovascular diseases (CV) are consistent to be the top three reasons for total inpatient admissions and top one and two in outpatient consults, she said.

She said that CV is the number one in internal care unit (ICU) admissions in GCGMMC.

Being an island, she said, “cardiac workup was something that Boholanos would need to go to neighboring islands in Cebu, Dumaguete and Cagayan de Oro” for the lack of CV services and equipment here.

She said that cardiac diagnostics consisted of an ECG and 2d echo were only available in private hospitals after she arrived here in 2017. “The only semblance of a heart center in Gallares was an ECG machine.”

And through the efforts and leadership and support of the department chair and hospital chief, GCGMMC finally put up a heart station with launching of rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart diseases Z benefit package that were being inaugurated
on Valentines Day, February 14, 2023.

The heart station has acquired the 2d echo machine and trained personnel, she said, saying this is a significant achievement and “game changer” for it will be able to properly diagnose patients, both inpatient and outpatient.

“And we all know that a correct diagnosis is the key to the correct treatment.”

But the heart station was then wanting for more, she said. The station then needed a stress test machine necessary to diagnose ischemic heart diseases; 24-hour ECG test or Holter test to diagnose arrhythmias; vascular ultrasound to workup peripheral artery disease and workup venous thrombosis.

And during her speech, Cunanan said she’s happy to announce that “we have all these machines already and have in fact been operational for the last few months and providing crucial support for managing our patients with cardiovascular diseases, both inpatients and outpatients.”

But the heart station’s capabilities and goals do not stop in diagnosis job, she said, but it has also acquired an equipment for emergency purposes, also. She said the station is now having three units of temporary pacemaker pulse generators for patients with life-threatening heart blocks.

“It is likewise noteworthy that we have performed the first permanent pacemaker insertion in Gallares a few months ago, in June 2022,” she said.

For this, she’s grateful to the people behind the heart station project that came into fruition.

In addition, Cunanan bared that a doable plan is already underway which is the establishment for a cardiac cathlab in the community, a very important facility than can literally mean life and death for their patients.

With this equipment in heart station, Cunanan is full of hope that “Soon, we may be able to perform even more advanced cardia procedures, coronary angiograms, angloplasties, fo our patients suffering from chest pain, or worse, already having a heart attack.”

So far, GCGMMC’s heart station is more equipped and complete in its services than most of the private hospitals in the province.

She ended her speech, saying that “we have achieved our collective goal of providing healthcare to all, where health is indeed a human right – the essence of health care that is truly universal.”

Meanwhile, the Ischaemic heart diseases though they’re non-communicable are considered as the number one in the top ten causes of mortality among the people, according to Dr. Jesson Butcon, advisor, Health Systems Integration and Strengthening of the Department of Health.

And the acute respiratory infection is the number one in top ten causes in terms of morbidity.

“More than four out of five CVD deaths are due to heart attacks and strokes, and one third of these deaths occur prematurely in people under 70 years of age. The most important behavioral risk factors of heart disease and stroke are unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, tobacco use and harmful use of alcohol,” World Health Organization (WHO) said.

Butcon was one of the resource persons in the orientation of local chief executives (LCEs) and city/municipal health officers on local health system and universal health care sometime last year.

The disease is followed by (2) cardiovascular, (3) identified COVID-19, (4) malignant neoplasms, (5) diabetis mellitus, (6) hypertension diseases, (7) pneumonia, (8) unidentified COVID-19, (9) other heart diseases and (10) chronic lower respiratory diseases, Butcon said. (rvo)

By Bohol Island News

Your reliable source of news and content in the island and the rest of Central Visayas and Mindanao.

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