The Department of Health – MIMAROPA (Oriental/Occidental Mindoro, Marinduque Romblon, Palawan) together with Culion Sanitarium and General Hospital (CSGH) yesterday received the first sea ambulance donated and funded by the Sasakawa Memorial Medical Health Foundation and the Association of Professional Motor Boat Racers of Japan.
“This sea ambulance is an essential part in the delivery of health care services that will attend to emergencies, disaster and rescue operations in far flung island communities of Palawan. It will bring health care closer to people in need of health specialists and hospital health care,” Regional Director Eduardo C. Janairo stated during the turnover ceremony held at the Culion Centennial Marker in Culion, Palawan.
“We can now lessen impediments in health care delivery due to geographical location and this is the only means to immediately deliver patients from distant island areas to CSGH in need of medical care,” he added.
The sea ambulance is outfitted with the necessary basic life support equipment such as oxygen, resuscitator, defibrillator and immobilization devices so that person with serious injuries can be first stabilized and transported faster to a hospital.
It is powered by a Mitsubishi 6D16 engine, and equipped with radar, GPS, depth finder, pilot control shifter, radio, siren and emergency lights. It can go from 0 to 25 knots.
The vessel is manned by one emergency doctor, one emergency nurse, two health attendants and two boat personnel.
The CSGH is a DOH-retained secondary hospital and the only general hospital operating in the Calamianes Group of Islands that provides general and public health care services to municipalities in the Calamian Group of Islands namely Culion, Coron, Busuanga, Linapacan as well as the northern island municipalities of El Nido, Cuyo, Dumaran, Agutaya and Taytay.
“Sea travel is the easiest and fastest way to deliver health care services and to transport patients to a health facility. It can also provide an effective rescue vessel during a possible sea conflict that may act as a temporary sea clinic that provide immediate medical care to victims of such disputes in the high seas, “ Janairo emphasized.