Feature: Pinoy MD – a PCSO-DOH medical scholarship program
Butuan City (October 27) — The growing concern in the country today regarding doctorless municipalities, inequitable and inaccessible health care services and worsening state of health care is attributed to medical exodus.
According to the Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA), an estimated 4,000 doctors have become nurses in 2004. And with the growing population, doctor to population ratio is beyond the ideal number. With such scenario, the Department of Health (DOH) has foreseen a medical workforce crisis by 2010 if the health sector and stakeholders will not be able to promptly and properly address this situation.
The DOH with the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) has come up with an immediate solution – that is, establishing partnership with academe to design a curriculum that will be able to develop medical graduates who are not only physically and mentally fit but most of all service-oriented. Thus, Pinoy MD: “Doktor Para sa Kapwa Pilipino” was born and launched this year.
This is considered a priority program of the present administration under President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo with the goal of accessibility of health care services for the marginalized and poor sectors of the country. This scholarship program is open to all Indigenous People (IP), Barangay Health Workers (BHW) and all government employees of their children.
This school year, a total of 54 scholars were accepted and enrolled in the different government and private medical schools nationwide. In Caraga, three fortunate health workers were granted with the said scholarship. Scholars are then required to render two years of service to the government for every year of study. Currently, the DOH through its Centers for Health Development (CHD) are now accepting applications for school year 2007. Interested individuals or applicants are advised to call or visit the DOH-CHD Caraga on or before November 24, 2006.