Chinese General Hospital and Medical Center
|Chinese General Hospital and Medical Center|
|Location||286 Blumentritt St., Sta. Cruz, Manila, NCR, Philippines|
|Hospital type||Private, Charity, teaching|
|Affiliated university||Chinese General Hospital College of Nursing and Liberal Arts|
|Beds||600 private patient beds|
|Lists||Hospitals in Philippines|
The Chinese General Hospital stands unique among the hospitals of Manila. It is one of the oldest, being founded in Spanish colonial times. It was founded purely from charitable donations of well-meaning Chinese immigrants, and it has steadily grown in fame and service in its 113 years of existence.
One key to the hospital's success is the backing of a strong association, the Philippine Chinese Charitable Association or PCCA. The PCCA was founded much earlier, in 1878, when a group of Chinese immigrants established the "Communidad de Chinos" or Chinese Community.
In the early months of 1891, Capitan Carlos Palanca Tanchueco, together with wealthy Chinese businessmen Chan Guan and Mariano Velasco were touched by the plight of their sick and poor countrymen. Together they donated and raised funds to construct a medical clinic, where treatment was free of charge. Later expanding into a hospital, the charity funds came from a monthly tribute on Chinese stores and a special fee on Chinese residents coming from China. Two years later, the "Hospital de Chinos" was registered under the Spanish Government.
With the American Occupation of the Philippines in 1898, Capitan Tanchueco became the first Chinese Acting Consul. As time went by, Chinese residents increased and medical science progressed, thus the small Chinese hospital became inadequate. In 1917, a fund raising campaign led to the construction of the first Chinese General Hospital (CGH) with updated facilities. Chinese residents showed their strong support and the target amount of Php 200,000 was quickly reached.
By 1921, the new hospital was inaugurated with Dr. Tee Han Kee as its first medical director. Perhaps the most famous Chinese physician at that time, Dr. Tee Han Kee also served as consultant for the Philippine Health Service because of his expertise in bubonic plague. In the same year, Dr. Tee Han Kee founded the Chinese General Hospital School of Nursing and saw to it that the CGH became one of the most modern hospitals in the country.
The War Years
The Second World War wrought havoc on hospital operation. Because of fear of an impending invasion, the CGH Directors and other prominent people were potential political prisoners of war. Mass evacuation followed. Those left behind formed the skeleton staff to keep the hospital functioning: the Principal, the Chief Nurse, some graduate and some student nurses, two junior resident physicians, and some male helpers.
The critical period of 1945 coincided with the American Leyte landings and subsequent heavy bombardment. More than five hundred victims from the shrapnel and bullets were admitted to the Chinese General Hospital, occupying all the available spaces in the corridors. The remaining hospital staff persevered and carried on with their duties.
After the war, the Chinese Community reconvened and Dr. Antonio Nubia was appointed director with Dr. Manuel Chua Chiaco as assistant director. In 1946, Mr. Go Chong Beng called for the immediate rehabilitation of the hospital by the Chinese Community. In a short span of two years, a new Charity Pavilion was constructed across the main building under Mr. Go Kim Pah.
By 1950, memories of the war slowly faded and a refurbished CGH was inaugurated with up-to-date facilities. In the same year, Dr. Pedro Mayuga, Director of the Philippine Bureau of Medical Services of the Department of Health, approved the hospital for training and teaching. Well known consultants assisted in the hospital's activities including Drs. Luis Guerrero, Antonio G. Sison, Jose Albert, Florencio Quintos, Rosendo R. Llamas, and Fortunato Guerrero.
From the 1950s onward, there were progressive improvements in the facilities and buildings of the CGH: the inauguration of the Cu Unjieng Chest Pavilion (1953), the Cheng Tsai Jun Memorial 100-bed Charity Wards (1967), the New Chinese General Hospital and Medical Center (1969), the 3-story Emergency Building through the creative efforts of Dr. Vicente Dy Sun, Sr. (1971), the 6-story School of Nursing Building (1975), and the 6-story annex to the Main Building under the presidency of Mr. Tuan Cheng Yu (1983).
Then President Marcos lauded the work of the CGH and the PCCA saying, "It is my hope that you will continue in your splendid task, giving aid and comfort to every human being, as you have done for nearly a century, regardless of creed, race, nationality or personal persuasion."
The 1990s began with Dr. Kasian Lim's appointment as new director and Mr. James G. Dy as president of the Philippine-Chinese Charitable Association. From the time when Mr. James G. Dy assumed office, this started an era of expansion, computerization and updating of medical equipment and appliances in every department. By 1996, the Heart Institute was built with renowned cardiologist Dr. Dy Bun Yok as Director and Dr. Manual Chua Chiaco, Jr. as the Chief in Cardiovascular Surgery.
Now in the new millennium, the hospital continues to expand its breadth of charity work to particularly assist the families of policemen, firemen, and others. For more than a century, the Chinese General Hospital, through its directors, has never wavered on its noble mission: to provide help and humanitarian service to the members of the society who are in most need of them.
Other Chinese hospitals and health care serving local Chinese communities:
- San Francisco Chinese Hospital
- Yee Hong Centre for Geriatric Care - Greater Toronto Area
- Montreal Chinese Hospital
- Chinese General Hospital and Medical Center, philippinecompanies.com. Retrieved July 2011