Group of doctors in Cebu offer free online consultation

By: Immae Lachica - General Assignments Reporter/CDN Digital | April 06,2020 - 01:55 PM

Photo from Sugbo Volunteer Doctors Online Facebook page.

CEBU CITY, Philippines— A group of Cebu-based doctors is offering free online consultation for Cebuanos who want to get checked without going to the hospital so as to avoid the risk of getting exposed to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Doctor Marlo Vir Cal Batucan, a urologist and uro-oncologist and one of the founding doctors of the Sugbo Volunteer Doctors Online, told CDN Digital that as doctors, their duty is to ensure the health of the people in ways they can, thus resorting to the use of the internet as a way to communicate with their patients who have health concerns.


“Yes, its was just an idea I presented to Dr. Angelica Rivera Kuizon, a nephrologist because we have been entertaining patients on Facebook but the problem of doing it individually is that we can’t just look for other specialists when we need to refer patients. So it started with a small network and eventually people volunteered,” he said.

Sugbo Volunteer Doctors Online is the name of their official Facebook page where patients can send messages to book for appointments.

“So far for this operation, we have 25. We have another 20 doctors on standby for batch 2 depending on how this week will turn out. Many doctors are now volunteering but its not easy as saying yes and give them patients. We have to screen each inquiry before we can give an appointment and give a schedule with a specialist,” he added.

Batucan also told CDN Digital that most of the volunteer doctors have finished telemedicine courses offered by Harvard Medical School.

They have doctors specializing in General Medicine, Pediatrics, Ob-gyne, General Surgery and sub-specialties like cardiology, pulmonary, and urology, among others.

The group has already accepted booking appointments since Sunday, April 5, 2020.

“The booking of appointments on the page is open 9 to 5 pm, but the consultation depending on the bulk of consults for the day and the availability of doctors schedule is we do consultations up to 8 pm,” said Batucan.

With more or less 40 plus volunteer doctors on standby, Batucan is still encouraging other doctors to help out in their mission.

“One of our goals is to encourage hospitals and different medical groups to offer telemedicine. We are still hoping that there will be a better platform for us so we can cater to more patients. We also encourage other doctors to organize themselves. we will glad to show them how to go about this so we can cater to more patients,” he said.

So for all the Cebuanos who would want to get checked by a doctor, check out the Sugbo Volunteer Doctors Online Facebook page and book an appointment now. /bmjo


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TAGS: Cebu‬, consultations, coronavirus, covid19, doctors, free, online consultation, telemedicine

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