UK, NHS hospitals want to partner with PH on health care

By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora

December 2, 2023, 11:38 am

MANILA – The United Kingdom wants to increase collaboration with the Philippines in the area of health care after a trade mission composed of National Health Service (NHS) organizations capped its visit to Manila this week.

The trade mission was in the Philippines from Nov. 29 to Dec. 1 and met with various health care stakeholders and government officials, including Health Secretary Teodoro Herbosa.

“The UK’s leading NHS hospitals want to work with partner countries overseas to share our 75 years’ experience of innovation using research-based clinical pathways, the most advanced science and excellent training, equipment, and digital system,” said Lindsey Gilbert-Crouch, country director for Trade and Investment.

“We feel that there is much that the UK and the Philippines can learn from one another to ensure the best possible health care outcomes for our people.”

In a statement dated Dec. 1, the UK Embassy in Manila said the mission shared its health care challenges and innovations with Filipino stakeholders and conveyed its interest in learning more about Philippine health care models.

“The visit demonstrated the importance of UK-Philippines relations and will hopefully open up many more health care collaborations in the future,” it said.

It pointed out that the UK has a strong track record of scientific breakthroughs and is delivering the next generation of life-changing treatments, technologies, and services.

These include personalized health care using digital health and artificial intelligence (AI), and cutting-edge medical technology.

The visit also saw the signing of a Twinning Partnership between West Yorkshire and Pasig City, which is seen to create opportunities to grow research and innovation in the health care sector.

The memorandum of understanding was signed by Mayor Vico Sotto and Richard Stubbs, CEO of Health Innovation Yorkshire and Humber.

The pilot Twinning Partnership will take forward the development of the Philippines’ first digitized patient registry for primary care.

According to the embassy, the registry is already benefitting up to one million patients seeking public health care in barangay health centers across Pasig City and Iloilo City.

The registry was launched through the UK’s “Better Health Programme.”

The UK delegation included Aire Logic, Health Innovation Yorkshire & Humber, Modality Partnership, Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Royal College of General Practitioners, UCL Global Business School for Health, University of Bradford, University of Leeds, and West Yorkshire NHS Integrated Care Board.

May Parsons, the Filipino nurse who delivered the first coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccination outside of clinical trials, was also present during a reception hosted for the mission. (PNA)