Baguio is again recalling its centennial theme of “Fostering A Culture of Caring” by launching the second edition of “Straight into Baguio’s Heart”, a fun run on September 26 to build a support fund for the growing number of kidney patients in the city and Benguet.
Launched last year by city mayor Mauricio Domogan to keep alive the city’s theme when it marked its 100 years in 2009, the three-bracket (3K, 5K and 10K) footrace initially raised P312,000 that went to supporting 27 patients in their change of fistula, 45 who were hospitalized and five severe cases, according to an expenditure report released by the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center Dialysis Patients and Partners Association.
The amount was raised through registration fees, solicitations and personal fund donations from mayor Domogan, city officials and business establishments.
In an administrative order for the Baguio charter anniversary run, the mayor noted that the city should flesh out its centennial theme of “caring” with a humanitarian feature of its anniversary celebration that reaches out to those in need.
Earlier, the mayor and the city council called on Philhealth, the country’s medical insurance, to increase the treatment benefits of dialysis patients 30 sessions, saying those suffering from kidney failure have to under two or three times dialysis a week in order to survive.
A city council resolution authored by councilor Peter Fianza and endorsed by the mayor and Rep. Nicasio Aliping Jr. also resulted in the establishment of medical support branches of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes here in Baguio and in Bontoc, Mt. Province.
Previously, kidney patients from Baguio and the Cordillera would have to travel to the PCSO office in Metro-Manila and their line up to submit their applications for financial support to sustain their lifetime maintenance treatment. For these monthly trips, the city, the Benguet Electric Cooperative, the municipal government of La Trinidad, Benguet and the provincial government of Benguet had to provide vans for the patients and their relatives.
“These initiatives had to be done considering the increasing number of patients undergoing hemodialysis,” the mayor said.
Only last Monday,t he city council invited Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center chief, Dr. Emmanuel Acluba, to shed light into the problems posed by the increasing number of kidney patients being treated here, including those coming from other regions which do not have dialysis facilities.
The annual fun-run for patients is designed to allow an avenue for citizens of Baguio, Benguet and other parts of the Cordillera to extend their support to the growing number of patients afflicted with renal disease.
People who want to join this year’s run may register at the public information division at the city hall, the city sports office, the city swimming pool at the Burnhham Park, the BGHMC and at the public market in La Trinidad, Benguet./Ramon Dacawi.