NEGROS ORIENTAL, April 12 (PIA) – The Negros Oriental Provincial Hospital (NOPH) central block was formally opened recently to address the perennial problem of patient overcrowding at the old NOPH building.

During the opening, some 120 OB and surgery patients already admitted in the old building were given the privilege to first occupy the state-of-the-art hospital central block.

Provincial Information Officer Adrian Sedillo reported that the new 250-bed capacity four-storey hospital structure is now considered the key to decongest the hallways of old hospital crowded with patients  due to lack of rooms.

The central block now hosts the eight operating rooms located in the ground floor, six of which are intended for various surgical cases and two are for obstetric related cases.

Aside from the eight ORs, the ground floor also hosts the neo-natal ICU, Post anaesthetic Care Unit (PACU), the information section, the delivery room, the recovery rooms and other facilities.

The second floor is intended for surgery wards, Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and some isolation rooms for highly contagious diseases, while the third floor will be for OB wards, private rooms and isolation rooms.

The fourth floor is for additional wards, private rooms and more isolation rooms for highly contagious diseases.

Sedillo said the official opening can be considered as being long overdue considering the fact that the central block building was already considered completed as early asJanuary 2016.

However, the budget for the acquisition of hospital beds for the central block, its additional fixtures and features, including the budget for the structure’s monthly electric bill, was contained in the 2016 delayed budget that was supposed to complement its full operation, NOPH Admin Officer III Inocencio Obligar said.

Obligar added that the central block building was the main facility used for surgery cases during the Alameda Medical Mission early this year.

To ensure the efficiency of the operation of the central block building, Obligar said the provincial government started hiring additional health personnel since last year.

He said 60 nurses were initially hired on a part-time basis but was later elevated to permanent status.

The hospital administration also hired another 40 nurses also on part-time status, additional pharmacists, medical technologists, radiologists and even doctors.

Earlier, Negros Oriental Governor Roel Ragay Degamo and Provincial Administrator Richard Enojo clarified that the P350M loaned from the DBP was intended only for the construction of the four-storey central block building and did not include the budgetary requirement for supplies and equipment for it to be fully operational.

Obligar said that Gov. Degamo immediately ordered for the start of the operation of the central block building after the beds arrived recently. (jct/PIA7-Negros Oriental with reports from Adrian Sedillo, PIO)