The first Filipino hospital overseas is likely to open in Qatar in 2018, says an official of Philippine Business Council-Qatar (PBC-Q).
While the council and its partners are eyeing to open the hospital in 2018, a polyclinic over a 750sqm area will be opened soon.
PBC-Q, along with Medical Mission Group Hospitals and Health Services Cooperative Philippines (MMGHHSCP), is working on legal documentation to set up the pioneering cooperative hospital.
The new facility is expected to benefit more than 200,000 Filipinos and the wider community in the country.
“We are looking at being able to register the corporation this year,” PBC-Q Chairman Greg Loayon told the media yesterday.
“The next few months will be busy with an information campaign and in parallel we are working on legal documentation.
“While we sign memorandums of understandings, we want to be able to move to signing contracts later to have the structure in place,” Loayon said.
“The way the project is moving is more of a two-pronged way. We are starting with the polyclinic for which a site has been identified,” said Loayon.
The healthcare facility will be based on a groundbreaking cooperative model in which overseas Filipinos will be investors.
“The cooperative concept is unique and was tested and launched in the Philippines 30 years ago.
Qatari investors to back hospital
The project will follow this model and involve partnership between MMGHHSCP, Qatari investors and overseas Filipinos with government support,” said PBC-Q Adviser Robert Lepon. He said Qatari investors will provide the land and building while they are targeting 10 percent of the population of Overseas Filipinos in Qatar as investors.
Since the start of the information campaign, it has generated massive interest within the community and around 800 Filipinos have already confirmed their support for the project, said Loayon.
A five-member delegation from the Philippines headed by MMGHHSCP Chief Executive Officer Dr Jose Tiongco is in Qatar to hold talks with Qatari investors as well as meet Filipinos at the first training and general assembly of cooperative chapters today at Copthorne Hotel.
The cooperative hospital will benefit Filipino investors in Qatar by availing the best and affordable healthcare for them here and their relatives back in the Philippines as well as earning money.
“Their relatives back in the Philippines can access the same level of healthcare service through the MMGHHSCP network of 19 hospitals, ,” said Lepon.
Their investment, he said, will act as a ‘safety net’ for overseas Filipino investors in case they lose their jobs here since it will generate income for them through the wide MMGHHSCP network.
“Healthcare service is a competitive edge that the Philippines has over other countries. Around 80 percent of nurses in Qatar are Filipinos. We have to capitalize on that and this is the first step through which we will not just be workers but also investors,” he said. The proposed Filipino hospital will not just be serving Filipinos. Other nationalities can also avail of healthcare services Filipinos are known for.
“This is one way of giving back to a country that has been kind to Filipinos by providing us opportunities. Aside from providing services to our compatriots, it extends to the wider population itself. This our way of supporting Qatar National Vision 2030 which includes providing quality healthcare to the whole nation,” said Loayon. (Source)
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