PAGCOR’s licensed casinos to fund hospitals for PSG and OFWs

Fri | 02.14.2020 | 02:00 PM

PAGCOR’s licensed casinos to fund hospitals for PSG and OFWs(1st row, from left) PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo, Pampanga Vice Governor Lilia Pineda, Governor Dennis Pineda and DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III sign the memorandum of understanding on the first Overseas Filipino Workers Hospital which will be constructed in San Fernando, Pampanga. Witnessing the signing are (2nd row from left) Bloomberry Cultural Foundation Inc. Executive Director Filipina Laurena, DOH Undersecretary Lilibeth David, Bloomberry Resorts and Hotels Inc. Director of Regulatory Affairs Atty. Ellan Mark Pailan and OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac.

PAGCOR’s licensed casinos to fund hospitals for PSG and OFWsA Memorandum of Understanding between Bloomberry Cultural Foundation Inc. and concerned government agencies was signed on February 12, 2020 in San Fernando, Pampanga to formalize the construction of the OFW Hospital in San Fernando, Pampanga. It is expected to be operational by May 2021. In photo are (seated, from left) PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo, Pampanga Vice Governor Lilia Pineda, Pampanga Governor Dennis Pineda, DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III, DOH Undersecretary Lilibeth David, and OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac. Behind them are the mayors of Pampanga.

A modern hospital for the Presidential Security Group (PSG) and the first hospital for Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) will soon be operational through the funding of the integrated resorts licensed by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR).

Melco Resorts and Entertainment Philippines Corporation Foundation, the charitable arm of City of Dreams Manila developer, shoulders the P675 million construction cost of the PSG Station Hospital in Malacañang Park, San Miguel, Manila.

Meanwhile, Bloomberry Cultural Foundation, Inc. (BCFI), an entity established by the operator of Solaire Resort and Casino, donated P500 million for the construction of the OFW Hospital and Diagnostic Center in Barangay Sindalan, San Fernando, Pampanga. In addition to this, PAGCOR will donate P200 million for the hospital equipment.

PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Andrea Domingo said the agency is serious in putting up health facilities across the country. “We prefer to put up hospitals because it’s more permanent, more lasting and it covers more beneficiaries. We are very thankful that our licensees, through their Foundations, are helping us realize our goal to provide better medical facilities and health services for the Filipinos,” she said.

PAGCOR and its licensed casinos have been working together to contribute to nation-building. The licensees are required to establish a Foundation for the restoration of cultural heritage. PAGCOR approves the projects which will be undertaken by the Foundations to ensure adherence to set guidelines.

“A percentage of their gross gaming revenues are set aside for these Foundations. The fund shall be used for the protection, conservation and restoration of cultural heritage sites in the Philippines; improvement of public schools in the country; and provision of quality healthcare services just like what they are doing right now – building hospitals,” Domingo shared.

The two-storey PSG Station Hospital which is nearing its completion will house 50 beds with emergency room, out-patient department, nursing ward, private rooms and presidential suite, among others. The facility is expected to open in August 2020.

Melco Resorts Chief Operating Officer Kevin Benning, who led the topping off ceremony on February 11, 2020, said they uphold their commitment to support various undertakings related to environment, education, culture and healthcare.

“The PSG Station hospital is now a proof of this commitment and we hope that it helps contribute to the national government’s efforts in securing a resilient health system,” Benning said.

Meanwhile, the 100-bed capacity OFW hospital will exclusively serve overseas Filipino workers and will provide free medical services and basic services such as laboratory exams, medical certificates and other health requirements for those who will apply for employment abroad.

A Memorandum of Understanding between the government agencies involved and the stakeholders was signed on February 12, 2020 in San Fernando, Pampanga to assure the completion of the OFW medical facility. It is expected to be operational by May 2021.

BCFI Executive Director Filipina Laurena said the construction of the health facility for OFWs is one of the noble projects that they are supporting and they will make sure that it will be completed on time.

“We believe that OFWs are one of our modern day heroes. They contribute to their families and help our economy. The hospital that we are building for them will be at par with other private hospitals in the country,” she said.

Undersecretary Lilibeth David said the Department of Health (DOH) fully supports such project considering the shortage in hospital beds in the Philippines. “We are just number nine in the ASEAN region in terms of hospital beds. That’s why we are accepting all the help and support we can get from various government and private entities. These hospitals that we are building will not only give access to our countrymen but it will give them excellent care that they deserve.”

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