Gov. Oscar Moreno

The provincial government of Misamis Oriental has tapped leading wireless service provider Smart Communications, Inc. (SMART) to improve its health care services through the innovative use of cell phones and the Internet.

Initially, the focus of this partnership program is to help doctors of the provincial government deliver surgical services to patients in different parts of the province more efficiently.

Under an agreement with the provincial government, SMART will provide Internet connectivity to five (5) hospitals in Gingoog, Talisayan, Balingasag, Manticao and Initao.

That agreement was signed Wednesday, January 13, by Misamis Oriental Governor Oscar Moreno and SMART Public Affairs Group Head Ramon Isberto.

Dubbed the mobile surgery services project, this also includes technical support and assistance, including ICT training for hospital staff and personnel who will be involved in the computerization of operations. Internet access will be provided free of charge for one year.

SMART will also supply eight (8) 3G phones to doctors in the mobile surgery team. They will use the handsets to send data on and / or pictures of surgery patients in five provincial hospitals to an operations center in Cagayan de Oro City.

This information will help the mobile surgery team to screen patients and make the necessary preparations to ensure the efficient delivery of surgical services when they visit the different provincial hospitals.

Under its Province-wide Investment Plan for Health, Misamis Oriental has been rehabilitating the buildings and upgrading the facilities and medical personnel services of its seven provincial hospitals.

SMART’s tele-health program is part of its broad community partnership program called Kabalikat.

Under its tele-health program, SMART is also assisting the Physicians for Peace (PFP)-Philippines‘ “Walking Free Program” by providing a mobile phone-and-web application that enables volunteer doctors to assess the readiness of indigent amputees for artificial limbs even before they visit an area.

Called Amputee Screening via CEllphone NeTworking (ASCENT), the application enables PFP to provide real-time evaluation and advice on prosthesis (artificial limb) use for amputees in far-flung communities. (Misamis Oriental Press Office)

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