Occupational Health Systems across Selected Public Healthcare Facilities in the Philippines

Paul Michael R. Hernandez, Romeo R. Quizon, Guillano C. Lacsamana and Joanna I. Remaneses

Department of Environmental and Occupational Health,
College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila

Objective. The study aimed to collect data on the occupational health systems implemented across selected healthcare facilities in the Philippines, including: (1) governance system for occupational health and safety (OHS), (2) OHS information systems, (3) OHS financing systems, (4) technology and related systems for OHS, (5) the OHS workforce, and (6) the delivery of OHS services.

Methods. The data were collected through a walkthrough survey of the selected facilities as well as through the review of records and relevant documents found in the facilities.

Results. Governance and financing systems for OHS are not present in any of the facilities. 3 out of the 13 hospitals studied have employee medical records, accident/incident reports while none of the 19 facilities have Workplace Environment Monitoring Reports (WEM), implying the lack of OHS information systems. Due to the lack of a financing mechanism for occupational health services, there is a lack of OHS technology in the facilities which include but are not limited to the presence of an Immunization and Post-Exposure Program (present in 7 out of 13 hospitals and none of the 6 RHUs studied). 1 out of 19 facilities reported to having personnel delegated for OHS activities in their facility. Lastly, 1 out of 19 facilities have emergency treatment and medical facilities for their employees, indicating inadequate OHS service delivery in the facilities studied.

Conclusions. Standards and laws such as the Philippine OHS Standards and Department of Health (DOH) Administrative Order (AO) 2012-0020 have provisions with regard to OHS in these facilities, and stricter implementation of these provisions could help in filling in the gaps in the OHS systems in these facilities. This will provide a healthy workforce capable of giving better healthcare services to the general population.

Key Words: occupational health services, employee health services, health care facilities, occupational health and safety, occupational health systems, occupational health management