Two injured Sillimanians claim ‘being ignored’ at SUMC

Two injured Sillimanians said that the Silliman University Medical Center (SUMC) ‘ignored’ them in the emergency room after getting injured at SPEx, the all-university acquaintance party last July 10 at Hibbard Avenue.

Aily-an Luminario and Lyncon Claire Lasmarias, the two injured students, were in the middle of the partying crowd when a table collapsed. Lasmarias got a cut on her leg, while Luminario was pierced by a nail on her foot.

The Red Cross team was not there anymore, so both students, with their friends, went to the SUMC Emergency Room (ER), where their weight and blood pressure were taken.

They were then instructed to buy the anti-tetanus vaccine, but the victims and their friends did not have money.

They went to the ER cashier, but the cashier said that the students needed to call the Office of Student Services (OSS) for them to get their insurance and a refund processed by the office.

Pila nami ka minutes naghulat didto, then nihawa na lang mi. Didto nami sa pharmacy,” said Luminario.

They can only afford the materials, not the anti-tetanus shots that cost Php1,300 per shot. They decided to clean the wounds by themselves and buy the medical supplies for cleaning wounds at Pharmacia Mamita, because their wounds were bleeding while waiting.

Wala daw mi gi-entertain kay wala daw tung tambal. Asa mi mangita ug ing.ani nga kwarta?” said Lasmarias. “Ni hapdos naman gud ang samad… kami-kami ra ga taod.”

Kirk Philip Emperado, the Silliman University Student Government president, went to SUMC immediately after hearing about the incident around 11 p.m., but did not find them there. He saw the victims at Pharmacia Mamita.

Gipahulat ra man daw sila. Ga-bleed na, pero gahulat ra sila, wala ra sila gitagad,” said Emperado. “I was disappointed that time. So I told them, ‘No. Let’s go back to SUMC.’”

Emperado questioned the ER cashier why the victims were neglected when they brought their validated IDs.

The ER cashier said that the students lacked the other requirements they were looking for.

Emperado called Christy Destor, the OSS liaison officer. The two were given the anti-tetanus shots and their wounds were treated.

SUMC: They were not ignored

Dr. Benjamin Ong, the SUMC resident ER surgeon, said that the patients were assessed and given surgical care right away.

“After the patients were endorsed to me, I did what we usually do with the patients in the ER. I saw the patient and assessed their wounds and the severity of the injuries that time. I then explained the assessments and enumerated the surgical plans that night,” Ong said.

Ong said that they planned to dress the wounds and give tetanus shot and oral antibiotics.

While the ER personnel were preparing the materials, one of the students who were with Luminario and Lasmarias dressed the wounds without their knowledge.

“We have our own methods of doing the dressing. I’m not saying that the student’s dressing is not right, but we want to do the treatment ourselves,” Ong said.

Luminario said that Jany Macias and Lance Pellejo, sophomore Medical Technology students, cleaned and dressed their wounds.

Emergency procedure

For these cases, students need to secure a Letter of Authority (LOA) slip, issued by the university with Student Services OIC Dean Edna Gladys Calingacion’s signature.

But at irregular hours, students may call Christy Destor to process the insurances of the students.

“[SUMC] has my number. The ER outgoing cashier at that time told them to get my number at window three because it was on the screen or on the table,” said Destor.

Rodgie Lim, the ER cashier that time, told Destor that the students were “facilitated and given prescription.”

“Mr. Lim instructed them to ask for my cellphone number at window three, so they can call me. According to Lim, when the instruction was given, they were mumbling and murmuring about their service and did not follow such instructions,” said Destor.

Dr. Roberto Montebon, the SUMC president, suggested that insurance should be taken out on events, so that any medical expenses will not be an issue between the medical center and patients.

“We wish that the charges beyond the hospitalization plan will be covered by Silliman University on these kinds of events,” Montebon said.

Some SUMC benefits for Sillimanians are annual free physical examination, medical and surgical services and consultations, among others.

By: Andrea Dawn E. Boycillo and Babe Jocelie Isaga

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