A number of business executives from Guam who have traveled to the Philippines for medical treatment have reported overwhelming satisfaction.
Among those with glowing reports is Phil Dennis a loss-prevention consultant and a board member of the Guam Crime Stoppers program since 1985. Dennis went through triple-bypass surgery at the Asian Hospital and Medical Center in Manila in April 2004 and had nothing but praise for his treatment.
Dennis is among a growing number of Guamanians and Saipanese who elected to seek medical treatment in the Philippines. Insurance companies said there is a growing trend for their customers to choose Manila over Los Angels and Honolulu for treatment because it is closer less expensive and high quality.
In recognition of this trend the Marianas Business Journal and the Guam medical Society on June 24 and 25 are putting o the Marianas Manila Medical Symposiumwith medical directors and doctors coming from Asian Hospital St. Luke’sMedical City ad the American Eye Center. The doctors on Day 1 will tout theirmedical facilities to an exclusive audience of Journal subscribers and theirguests. The medical society is working with the visiting doctors to arrange credentialsso they can conduct classes for local doctors on Day 2 for continuing educationcredits.
“The healthcare there was outstanding the professionalism was there the technology was outstanding and so were the doctors and nurses ” Dennis said adding that the care at Asian Hospital was better than the care he received at the Good Samaritan Hospital a year earlier in Los Angeles. “Asian Hospital was more patient-oriented and to me more professional. I was just very pleased and satisfied with the treatment. Everything was on time – you didn’t have to wait around for results.”
He said that Manila medical centers often have a stigma but he was surprised at the quality of the hospital.
“I thought it was a hotel ” he said. “The doctors are very knowledgeable and very well trained. People have this idea that because it’s a poor country that they’re not very well trained. But the doctors I saw received their training on the mainland. In fact the two doctors I saw also maintain a practice in Washington D.C. and fly back and forth.”
Dennis said his wife a retired nurse from the Guam Memorial Hospital pediatrics division was also very impressed.
“I would go there anytime and I would recommend it to anybody ” he said. “Not only do you get top quality health care you also get your money’s worth too. For your dollar you get more than youre money’s worth at Asian Hospital.”
Another from the business community with a similar experience is Joe Roberto owner of Island Tinting. His first trip to Asian Hospital was in late 2003 with his wife for treatment of their baby daughter Shayden who needed emergency heart surgery.
“First of all it was truly a miracle ” Roberto said. “The facility that we were taken to was unbelieveable and the surgeons and nurses that worked on her were outstanding. It was done in one day’s time they took care of the situation right then and there.
“They took care of her like she was the Queen of England ” Roberto said. “Our treatment personally it was almost undescribable unless you’re there yourself. I was truly truly impressed with how Asian Hospital took care not only of my daughter but also myself and my wife. It really touched our hearts and souls.”
Roberto said he’s personally been a patient at Queen’s Hospital in Hawaii which he was satisfied with but that was surpassed by Asian Hospital. “Not only did they take care of the patient but they took care of the patient and family and I’ve never experienced that ” he said. “It was like you woke up in a dream world and they knew what you wanted and they got it for you no matter where it was.”
One example he said was that his wife bugged him to get a massage. So when he asked the guest services desk if they provided massages they asked him if he wanted a male or female masseuse the preferred age of the masseuse and the time and duration he desired the massage at his hotel room. “A simple yes or no would have done ” Roberto said. “It’s not only about the patient it was about me myself. If they didn’t have a particular soda they’d go get it.”
Roberto and his wife flew back and forth from Guam to Manila for a year as their daughter received treatment and he was extremely satisfied the entire time.
“I would strongly recommend anyone and everyone to seriously consider going to the Philippines if it cannot be done here to keep an open mind to the quality of treatment over there because it is there ” Roberto said.
James McFerran part owner and director of Advance Management Inc. said his experience of going to Manila was mixed. He received surgery in St. Luke’s Hospital in Manila in February and said he was treated very well.
“Pacificare’s local office there in Manila was very supportive and helpful ” McFerran said.
Jerold W. Filush partner-in-charge of the audit practice at Deloitte and Touche LLP accompanied his wife to St. Luke’s last July for some tests.
“She was very comfortable with the information she received ” he said. “It was decided back in October that she would get surgery and she was satisfied with the results.” Filush said he was satisfied with his treatment as an accompanying family member.“Actually when she had the surgery we checked into a suite right next to the hospital and I stayed there 24 hours a day.”
He said that others considering off-island treatment might consider Manila as a viable option. “I would say it’s an avenue they should take a look at ” Filush said. “It accomplished the objective that my wife had and everything went OK.”