The Department of Health-Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (DOH-RITM) presented two awards to the Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital and Medical Center (MMMH&MC) for its successful performance in implementing a national surveillance program geared towards the global battle against antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
These awards include Most Outstanding Sentinel Site for MMMH&MC and Best Hospital Report for 2018 which were received by Dr. Uzziel Ginette Bascao, Chief Resident of the hospital’s department of Pathology and Laboratories, together with Ms. Donna Marie Calaoagan, medical technologist and the bacteriology section supervisor.
Dr. Modesty Leaño, head of the said department, highlighted that the awards conferred to MMMH&MC serves as a “recognition to the Hospital’s commitment with DOH’s mandate to fight AMR which is usually a concern that is ignored but is actually becoming a growing public concern and is putting all of us at risk.”


According to the 2018 Annual Report of the DOH, AMR is considered as a serious public health threat as it makes treatment of various infections more challenging and compromises the achievements of modern medicine including organ transplant, cancer chemotherapy, and major surgery.
For more than 10 years now, MMMH&MC has been identified together with other 23 hospitals across the country as a sentinel site for Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance Program (ARSP) of the DOH.
“Our role in the Hospital as a sentinel site revolves around being the center in Region 1 wherein laboratory data are timely processed and gathered which are vital to the utilization of clinical practice guidelines and relevant policies towards the treatment, prevention, and control of the resistant infection,” explained Dr. Leaño.
MMMH&MC was able to garner an overall score of 94.17%, one of the highest among all sentinel sites in the country.
“The DOH has always acknowledged the challenges of limited staff support and resources in implementing the surveillance program but the award is truly a good measure that our Hospital is manned by skilled staff that contributed in garnering the award as best sentinel site for 2018,” also emphasized Dr. Leaño.
Through the awards, the Hospital’s management reaffirmed its commitment to double its efforts in building a stronger connection among all practicing clinicians, referring government and private hospitals with MMMH&MC.
“This connection and partnership is highly important if we are to ensure effective provision of health services and patient care in the community,” said Dr. Leaño.
In 2018, the World Health Organization estimated that around 700,000 people die in connection with AMR and it is foreseen that 10 million people will die due to this cause by 2050. True to this, the organization has been actively strengthening partnerships with various government, private institutions, and civil organizations to successfully implement underlining the global action plan on antimicrobial resistance.-John Michael Mugas