MEDICAL EQUIPMENT TRAINING, PHILIPPINES
Story of First Philippine Formal Training of Biomedical Technician Course
The History and the Makers
Year 1999. It started in California in a coffee meeting of long time friends Dr. Milton Amayun of International Aid and Dr. Rufino L. Macagba Jr. of Rotary Club of San Fernando La Union. The discussion was how to have a project in the Philippines with long-term impact in the health care situation of the country. The Medical Equipment Training Program of International Aid was mentioned as the gateway project. How to fund the project was then the main concern. Dr. Macagba contacted a friend, J. Michael Keckler of Rotary Modesto California. Rotarian Michael Keckler suggested the funding opportunity through the Health, Hunger and Humanity (3H) Project of The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International. The funding of 3H is for big projects and it also involves big contributions from participating rotary clubs.
International Aid was tasked to prepare the project proposal, Rotarian Rufino Macagba, Jr. was to source rotary clubs’ contributions and Rotarian Michael Keckler was responsible for submitting the proposal to Rotary Foundation. Rotary clubs sponsorship should be $25,000.00 in order to avail of the 3H funding. Rotary Club of Modesto California provided $10,000.00 and Rotary Club of San Fernando contributed $5,000.00, thus a short of $10,000.00. The Rotary Club of Manila came after a meeting of Dr. Macagba with fellow Rotarian, the late Rotarian Jose Tamayo of University of Perpetual Help. The biomedical training project was a revelation to the late Rotarian Tamayo because of his vision to have a biomedical course in the Philippines. It was an instant approval for the Rotary Club of Manila to get involved in the project with a contribution of $10,000.00, thus completing the required $25,000.00 to submit the project proposal to The Rotary Foundation.
The 3H Grant #01-1200
The 3H Grant #01-1200 was approved with International Aid as the implementing agency and the three clubs – Rotary Club of Manila, Rotary Club of San Fernando (LU) and Rotary Club of Modesto California – as co-sponsoring rotary clubs.
The 3H Grant #01-1200 was the first large scale and formal modular training in the Philippines conducted by a private organization. International Aid utilized its curriculum, the Medical Equipment Training (MET) Course, targeting hospital staff to participate in the course.
The project’s major goals are: (1) Medical equipment donation of $300,000.00 to three hospitals; (2) Train at least 75 biomedical technicians; and, (3) Two schools will provide Biomedical Technology Course when the project ends.
The first MET sessions were conducted in April 2001 with 17 hospital staff who attended Module 1. Participants came from the three major divisions of the country – Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
MET Philippines – 2001 to 2005
The MET program funded by the Rotary Foundation ran from 2001 to 2005. At the end of the project term, it was a big success both for the implementing agency: International Aid and the co-sponsoring Rotary clubs exceeding the objectives set at the start of the project.
In 2005, project goals were exceeded: (1) Equipment donation of at least US$700,000.00 shipped to three hospitals in the Philippines; (2) 105 trainees completed at least one module. They represented 92 hospitals and health care institutions from different parts of the country; 3 tertiary schools; and 2 private individuals. They also represented 34 provinces of the Philippines with 42 million populations based on 2000 National Census. (3) Three schools started the Biomedical Technology Course as course offering certified by TESDA – Lorma Colleges in La Union, University of Perpetual Help in Laguna, and Virgen Milagrosa University in Pangasinan. They were the first schools in the Philippines to offer the Biomedical Technology Course.
The Extension Project – 2006 to 2009
The 3H Grant #01-1200 officially concluded in May 2005 with a commendation from The Rotary Foundation for project’s outstanding performance in exceeding its objectives.
At the end of the Rotary Foundation funding, there were trainees/hospitals that did not complete all the six modules. The Rotary Club of Manila MET chaired by Robert M. Sears committed to get funding for those trainees/hospitals to complete all six MET modules.
Through funds from its co-sponsoring clubs, a year of extension training in year 2006 and 2007 was conducted. Then, the U.S. Department of State through its Biosecurity Engagement Program approved and funded another two-year extension program for Modules 3 to 6. Under the extension project, 29 new trainees participated in the program. The extension project aimed to have at least 44 new biomedical technicians in the Philippines who will complete all six modules in March 2009.
Rotary Club of Manila also aimed to sponsor the first batch of technicians to take the Technical Education and Skills Authority (TESDA) NCII examination on biomedical equipment technology.
RCManila Foundation, Philippines
International Aid, Michigan USA
Lorma Colleges, Philippines
University of Perpetual Help System Laguna, Philippines
Modesto Rotary Club, California USA
Rotary Club of San Fernando (LU), Philippines
Biosecurity Engagement Program (BEP) of the U.S. Department of State
Task 4 - MET Module 6 Progress Report
GTR07-035 Project Terminal Report
November 1, 2008 to April 30, 2009
On November 1, 2008, Medical Equipment Training (MET) Module 6 was formally started. Task 4 – MET Module 6 is the last training module under the GTR07 – 035 funding. The GTR07-035 funding has four (4) tasks which started from MET Module 3 to MET Module 6.
With the experiences learned in Task 3 – MET Module 5 with 45 trainees and had the biggest number of participants in a single module in MET Philippines since 2001, preparations were made early for Task 4 – MET Module 6. On the first week of November 2008 the inventory of trainees and hospitals to be invited to participate was finalized. There were fifty-five (55) trainees expected to participate in the module.
On November 20, 2008, the implementing agency RCManila Foundation (RCM) Project Committee met at Manila Polo Club to discuss the venue and requirements of MET Module 6. RCM decided on the training venue of University of Perpetual Help System Laguna (UPHSL), Biñan, Laguna, Philippines. This is the first module under this funding to be conducted at UPHSL. It was also decided that the trainees be divided into two classes running at the same time. Each class will have at least 27 trainees. It is still a big class for a skills training like the MET Course but RCM agreed to accommodate all trainees who previously attended MET and are qualified for Module 6.
A proposal was made to UPHSL to explore the conduct of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Biomedical Equipment Servicing National Certification II (BES NCII). The BES NCII assessment is the certification for biomedical technicians. When examinees pass the examination/assessment, they will be the first batch of certified biomedical technicians in the Philippines.
Also on the month of November 2008, Engr. Romeline Mylene Obonan, head of Biomedical Equipment Technology course at Lorma Colleges, submitted her application to TESDA La Union Provincial Office as a Biomedical Technician Assessor and for Lorma Colleges to become a Biomedical Technician Assessment Center.
Inspections on UPHSL’s facilities to support the MET Course were done on December 12, 2008. Basic course requirements for a Training Venue include two training rooms with electrical outlets/tools, computer room with internet connection, dormitory to house trainees and trainers, and sets of medical equipment for hands-on repair. Meeting with UPHSL’s officials were also done discussing the training details, timetables and other expectations for Module 6.
After the requirements of the training course were met, RCM and UPHSL signed a Memorandum of Understanding on December 18, 2008. MET Module 6 is scheduled on March 2 to 27, 2009 at UPHSL biomed training center.
The months of December 2008 and January 2009 were focused on contacting volunteer trainers particularly foreign trainers. In the history of MET Philippines since it started in 2001, Module 6 is not complete without the participation and expertise of volunteer foreign trainers. Billy Teninty of International Aid handled the invitations of volunteers from University of Michigan and other volunteer foreign instructors.
First and second weeks of January 2009 were focused on mailing of letters of invitation to participating trainees and hospitals. All trainees who attended MET Course since 2001 and did not finish Module 6 were also invited.
Invitations to local trainers/instructors were done on the first week of February 2009. With no confirmations from foreign volunteer instructors, initiatives were made identifying local trainers fitted to teach Module 6 sessions. One of the biggest challenges of conducting MET Course in the Philippines is the shortage of local trainers especially for higher modules like Module 6 where it involves more sophisticated medical equipment. Engr. Ricarte Fontanilla, the biomedical engineer of Lorma Medical Center, is a key instructor of MET Philippines on equipment troubleshooting sessions. However, with the number of target trainees of fifty-five (55), Engr. Fontanilla cannot accommodate two classes running at the same time.
When the project conducted Task 3 – Module 5, two MET graduates who work in the government hospitals were invited to co-teach Equipment Troubleshooting on Laboratory Equipment. They were Bosenti Sanchi of Benguet General Hospital and Reginaldo Juan of Sto. Domingo District Hospital. The goal is to build future trainers and instructors in the field of biomedical equipment repair and maintenance in the Philippines. As initial exposure of their teaching skills, they assisted foreign volunteer instructor Ruthann Johnston.
For Module 6, previous MET graduates who can be instructors were again identified. Joel Fadrigo of Mindanao Medical Center and Reynaldo Genson of Brokenshire Hospital were invited. These two MET graduates are from Mindanao area. Reynaldo Gaylon of Remedios Trinidad Romualdez Hospital in Visayas area was also called to participate as instructor. In Luzon area, Glenn Coronia of Healthway Medical Clinics and Ricardo dela Pena of Provincial Government of Rizal were asked to teach. Bosenti Sanchi and Reginaldo Juan were also invited.
Engrs. Reynaldo Genson and Ricardo dela Pena committed to teach Module 6 sessions. Engrs. Reynaldo Genson and Bosenti Sanchi decided on Equipment Troubleshooting VI. Engr. Ricardo dela Pena chose Advanced Troubleshooting. Engr. Romeline Mylene Obonan of Lorma Colleges agreed to teach Biomed Computer Applications. Engr. Ricarte Fontanilla accepted Supervised Work Experience and Advanced Troubleshooting. Reginaldo Juan decided to assist to on hands-on activities and help the trainees in their group repair projects.
With commitments from local volunteer instructors to teach Module 6, there was still a need for foreign volunteer instructors because only Ricarte Fontanilla and Romeline Mylene Obonan were the experienced MET instructors/trainers.
On the third week of February 2009, another challenge to Task 4 – Module 6 was encountered. Ricarte Fontanilla begged off for the teaching assignment at UPHSL due to his schedule at Lorma Medical Center. Lorma was undergoing its first attempt for an ISO certification. Ricarte Fontanilla proposed that his sessions be conducted at Lorma training facilities for him to accommodate both the demands of his work and the MET Course.
Also on the third week of February 2009, Billy Teninty confirmed his availability to teach Biomed Computer Applications. With no other confirmations from foreign volunteer instructors and with the proposal of Ricarte Fontanilla, a final training venue arrangements and schedules were finalized. Training venues were divided into two between Lorma Colleges and UPHSL. Please refer to Exhibit B for the detailed Schedule of Training and Trainers.
With the change of training venues, final arrangements were then made at UPHSL’s dormitory and training rooms. Coordination and arrangements were also done at Lorma Colleges including hotel room reservations at Sea & Sky Hotel and at La Mer Resort.
Last week of February 2009 was focused on attendance confirmation from participants, completion of training kits & training manuals, and ordering of consumable materials used in the classroom.
March 2, 2009 was the formal Opening Ceremony of Module 6 at 9:30 in the morning at UPHSL. Group 2 trainees were welcomed for another month of training by Victor Tamayo who gave the Welcome Remarks. Flocerfida Amaya of UPHSL introduced the participating trainees and hospitals of Module 6. RCM MET Chairman Robert Sears and RCM President Romeo Batino delivered messages challenging the trainees to excel in the field of biomedical repair and services. RCM members Alexander Yap, Bienvenido Laguesma, Renato Sales and Cesar Ubaldo were also present to issue training kits to trainees. Also attended the event were Roberto Tamayo of UPHSL, Ferdinand Sumido of UPHSL, Karen Tamayo of UPHSL, Romeline Mylene Obonan of Lorma Colleges, Ma. Sol Ogates of Biosecurity Engagement Program Manila, Marivic Claveria of International Aid, Anna Toledo of RCM, Rodolfo Mendoza of UPHSL, and Marcial Cagunot of UPHSL.
March 2, 2009 at 1:00 pm was the start of the training sessions of Group 2 at UPSHL. It started by an orientation on training schedules and regulations by Marivic Claveria. Dr. Flocerfida Amaya familiarized the trainees on university and dormitory rules. At 2:00pm, Engrs. Reynaldo Genson and Bosenti Sanchi started sessions on Equipment Troubleshooting VI on Diagnostic Ultrasound, Monitors and Fetal Monitoring.
On March 3, 2009 at 12nn, an informal opening ceremony for Group 1 was conducted at Lorma Colleges welcoming the trainees for their last module under the MET Course. Marivic Claveria conducted an orientation on training regulations and required documents to be submitted to TESDA for the BES NCII examination. March 4, 2009 was the start of Group 1’s training sessions on Supervised Work Experienced on Medical Computer Technology and Cardiac Equipment taught by Engr. Ricarte Fontanilla assisted by Reginaldo Juan. Please refer to Exhibit B for the detailed Schedule of Training and Trainers.
On March 6, 2009, Engr. Romeline Mylene Obonan was approved by TESDA La Union as BES NCII Assessor and Lorma Colleges was approved as Assessment Venue. Lorma Colleges conducted its first certification examination/assessments on March 7 and 8, 2009 to twenty-eight (28) trainees and trainers. All of the examinees passed the certification except one. They joined the first batch of certified biomedical technicians in the Philippines.
The BES NCII assessment of TESDA has started only on January 2009 with a pilot assessment in Quezon City, Manila through an endorsed-Assessor to run the Assessment Package.
On March 14, 2009 Group 1 trainees at Lorma Training Center were transported to UPHSL Training Center. Lorma provided free use of their school bus to transport the trainees to UPHSL. The Lorma bus also picked up Group 2 trainees at UPHSL and brought them to Lorma Colleges. UPHSL is 8 hours drive away from Lorma Colleges, thus, a need for transport service to haul trainees between the two training venues.
On March 16, 2009 Group 1 trainees went to Ospital ng Tondo, a government hospital in Manila, and did an on-site repair on various sets of equipment covered in different MET Modules. On March 17, 2009 trainees went to St. Paul Hospital Cavite for another whole day of repair activities.
On March 17, 2009 at 5:30pm, the RCM MET Committee headed by its Chairman Robert M. Sears and International Aid officers met with CRDF Project Manager Lisa Hilton at Elks Club, Makati City. The meeting was focused on future collaborations with CRDF. Present during the meeting were RCM MET Committee members Robert Sears, Romeo Batino, Rene Sales, Beda Fajardo, Ben Santos and Anna Toledo. Milton Amayun, Alan Talens, Billy Teninty, and Marivic Claveria representing International Aid also joined the meeting.
On March 20, 2009, Lisa Hilton of CRDF visited UPHSL to observe the training sessions and interview Group 1 trainees. The trainees gratefully shared their experiences and stories to Lisa Hilton. UPHSL officers headed by Dr. Karen Tamayo showed the school facilities and the support facilities for the biomedical course.
On March 23, 2009, Group 2 trainees at Lorma were transported back to UPHSL for the last training sessions. Lorma again provided free use of their school bus to transport the trainees.
On March 27, 2009 at 3:00pm, Module 6 Closing and Awarding Ceremonies were conducted at UPHSL Performing Arts Theater. RCM MET Chairman Robert M. Sears and RCM President Romeo Batino awarded the Certificates of Training to fifty-three (53) trainees who successfully completed the requirements of MET Module 6. Of the 53 trainees, there were 41 who completed Modules 1 – 6. Graduation speakers were Robert Sears, Romeo Batino and Billy Teninty who delivered congratulatory and challenging messages to the completers.
Also on March 27, 2009 TESDA Laguna approved the application of UPHSL as Assessment Venue and Engr. Marcial Cagunot as an Accredited Assessor. On March 28, 2009 there were eight (8) trainees who took the BES NCII at UPHSL. Of the 8 trainees, 7 are first timers and 1 is a repeater. All of them passed the examination.
On March 28, 2009 at 3:00pm, trainees who completed all six modules attended the Lorma Colleges’ Commencement Exercises in San Fernando City, La Union. Of the 41 completers, there were 39 trainees who took advantage of Lorma Colleges’ equivalency program on 2-year Biomedical Equipment Technology (Modular) Course. TESDA La Union approved Lorma’s application for course equivalency program to completers. Lorma Colleges can issue a 2-year diploma to completers who want to apply under the course equivalency program.
On March 30 to April 1, 2009 Lorma Colleges conducted the BES NCII examination. There were twenty-two (22) trainees who took the examination and passed.
Simultaneous with MET Module 6 is the conduct of the remaining second half of Module 2 for those trainees who did not complete the later module. Half of Module 2 was conducted during Saturdays and Sundays from March 2 to 27, 2009. To complete eighty hours (80) of training, trainees also attended evening sessions during weekdays.
On the month of April 2009, activities were focused on documentations, evaluations, compilation of Success Stories & Accomplishment Reports of trainees, report generation, and report submission to CRDF.
One significant milestone during this reporting period is the conduct of TESDA BES NCII examinations and certifications. The trainees who passed the certification joined the first biomedical technicians in the Philippines. MET Philippines again made another history in the field of biomedical technology in the Philippines.
Task 4.1: Module 6 Training Preparation
- The Collaborator will develop and prepare training materials and manuals
- We have done this activity. Module 6 training materials and manuals were prepared and issued to all trainees.
The Collaborator will coordinate with Lorma Colleges and/or University of Perpetual Help Laguna as the venue for MET Module 6
- We have done this activity. Lorma Colleges and the University of Perpetual Help System Laguna were selected as the training venues.
The Collaborator will select 44 trainees from different hospitals nationwide, where 15 trainees are fully financed and 29 trainees are subsidized
- We have exceeded the 44 target trainees. We have trained 53 biomedical technicians from 27 provinces and 3 National Capital Region cities of the Philippines. Of the 53 trainees, 41 successfully completed the requirements of MET Modules 1 – 6.
The Collaborator will contact and invite qualified in-country and international trainers
- We have done this activity. Local trainers included Engr. Romeline Mylene Obonan of Lorma Colleges, Engr.. Ricarte Fontanilla of Lorma Medical Center, Engr. Reynaldo Genson of Brokenshire Medical Center, Engr. Bosenti Sanchi of Benguet General Hospital, Reginaldo Juan of Sto. Domingo District Hospital, and Engr. Ricardo de la Pena of Provincial Government of Rizal. International volunteer Billy Teninty, MET Director of International Aid, taught for one week.
The Collaborator will purchase basic tools, test materials, and consumable materials needed in the training program
- We have done this activity. Training aids and materials were purchased and used during the electronics/electricity sessions.
The Collaborator will identify lodging/dormitory, medical equipment as a training aids, and training room.
- We have done this activity. While trainees were at Lorma Colleges Training Venue, they were housed at Sea and Sky Hotel and at La Mer Resort. At University of Perpetual Help System Laguna, trainees and trainers were provided a dormitory.
- Lorma and UPHSL both provided medical equipment as training aids and training rooms. Both training venues also provided sets of equipment for repair and assessments. St. Paul’s Hospital Cavite (a private tertiary hospital) and Ospital ng Tondo (a government tertiary hospital) provided different kinds of equipment for on-site repair at their hospitals.
The Collaborator will coordinate with Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) for the accreditation of the trainees who completed all the modules.
- All the 53 trainees were able to sit for the TESDA Biomedical Equipment Servicing National Certification II. All trainees were qualified to sit for this examination because they exceeded the minimum requirement listed in the National Certification examination. All the 53 trainees passed the Certification and were awarded a National Certificate II in Biomedical Equipment Servicing.
Task 4.2: Module 6 Training
- The Collaborator will conduct training in Medical Equipment Training – Module 6 which covers Biomed Computer Applications, Advanced Troubleshooting, Equipment Troubleshooting VI (Diagnostic Ultrasound, Monitors, and Fetal Monitoring) and Supervised Work Experience.
- The Collaborator will conduct MET Module 6 in 40 hours/week for four-week period
- We have done this activity. Please refer to Appendix B for the detailed Schedule of Training and Trainers.
Task 4.3: Documentation and Evaluation
- The Collaborator will document the training and accomplishments of the trainees in terms of medical equipment repaired after the four-week training program.
- We have documented the conduct of Module 6.
- We have collected Trainees’ Accomplishment Reports. The accomplishment reports lists the equipment they have repaired from the time they reported back to their workplaces and started repairing and maintaining medical equipment.
The Collaborator will make trips to at least two trainees/hospitals to monitor and validate the accomplishments of the trainees
- We have done this activity. Marivic Claveria visited Pedro del Rosario of Baguio General Hospital and Andrew Bentres of Provincial Health Office of Benguet to check reports and monitor the trainee’s accomplishments.
Task 4 Deliverables:
1. Module 6 Training documentation
2. Trainees’ Accomplishment Reports
3. Trainee’s Training Evaluation
4. 44 hospital staff trained in MET Module 6
5. Final Project Report