Tzu Chi International Medical Association (TIMA) Global CEO Dr. Chin Lon Lin flew all the way from Taiwan on November 19 to talk before hundreds of Filipino doctors and hospital administrators at the recent 39th Philippine College of Hospital Administrators (PCHA) in Century Park Hotel in Malate, Manila.
In his talk, Dr. Lin discussed how TIMA doctors bring “patient-centered medical care” to their patients regardless of their status in life at the six Tzu Chi hospitals in Taiwan, encouraging the local doctors and administrators to adopt the same approach in their hospitals.
Tzu Chi Foundation’s humanistic culture is what Tzu Chi International Medical Association (TIMA) Global CEO Dr. Chin Lon Lin (林俊龍) emphasized in his talk at the 39th Philippine College of Hospital Administrators (PCHA) convention on November 19. Held at the Century Park Hotel in Manila, this annual forum gathers hundreds of doctors and hospital administrators from all over the Philippines.
For this year’s theme of “Enhancing Productivity and Efficiency in Hospital Administration” Dr. Lin shared his experiences and accomplishments in running six big Tzu Chi hospitals in Taiwan. He also talked about leading the TIMA members from the organization’s worldwide branches.
The TIMA Global Superintendent also shared the factors influencing Tzu Chi hospitals in serving its patients. These factors are: Environment, Community, Staff, Patient, and Spirituality.
According to Dr. Lin, an exceptional hospital should have the “10Cs” or Convenient, Comfortable, Complete, Continual, Comprehensive, Compassionate, Conservational, Cost-effective, Community-oriented, and Computer-based. All these, he adds, are present in all Tzu Chi hospitals.
Attending to every patient, he says, “is not only about healing their illness but also giving them happiness.” This is what it means to have a patient-centered medical care, which is the core of Tzu Chi Foundation’s Mission of Medicine.
Hearing this, Dr. Eduardo Uycoque, one of the attendees of the forum, reflected on their present approach toward medical care. “We mostly focus on the medical aspect, not realizing that this is not the only way to treat a patient,” he muses. From now on, he says, they will entertain their patients-in-waiting at their cancer institute in Batangas City with dancing and singing.
Dr. Manuel Panopio, meanwhile, lauded the Buddhist group for its medical principles. “I believe that their (Tzu Chi hospitals’) patients are happy in spite of their health conditions,” he says. According to him he will strive to put the virtues and medical methods he learned from Dr. Lin’s talk into practice.
Keeping self healthy to care for others
Another point Dr. Lin had underscored in his talk is adapting a vegetarian lifestyle. According to the doctor, many scientific studies have already proved that eating vegetarian is healthy not only for our health but also for our Mother Earth. He then encouraged the doctors to change their diet and encourage their patients to do the same.
“Keeping ourselves healthy and painting smiles in the faces of our patients are ways to give better medical services,” says Dr. Pedro Castillo, a paediatrician from Batangas City.
From the inspiration he got from the Taiwanese doctor, Dr. Castillo plans to gather his hospital staff for a meeting once he goes back. The meeting, he explains, will be intended on revamping their hospital’s mission and vision. In his words, he will make their medical institution not only a place that brings relief to health conditions but also a place where patients could find happiness in spite of their illnesses.
Sharing the ways of Tzu Chi
In closing, TIMA Global CEO Dr. Lin said there are two factors in caring for a patient: one is professional care that needs technical knowledge; and second is the humanistic approach in which medical professionals are not only attending to the health condition of the patient but also caring sincerely and treating the patient as they would a sick family member.
“Caring for a patient as if it was a family member is the ways of Tzu Chi which we wanted to share with people,” Dr. Lin says.
Such showcase of love inspired Dr. Ricardo Adriano, president of the PCHA to put into action the things he learned from the Taiwanese doctor. He said he will start helping the patients in their hospital in Sta. Rosa, Laguna with their hospital bills.
“From Dr. Lin, I learned the value of humility, compassion and dedication to our calling,” he adds.
Dr. Lin gave up a comfortable life when he decided to leave his post as a superintendent cardiologist in a hospital in the United States of America to be part of Tzu Chi International Medical Association (TIMA). The huge heart of Master Cheng Yen, founder of Tzu Chi Foundation, in helping the poor and sick all over the world is what inspired the doctor to make the choice.
Meanwhile, Dr. Paul Brigino shared his utmost gratitude that the TIMA Global CEO has responded positively to his request to talk before Filipino doctors. A member of TIMA Philippines himself, Dr. Brigino has seen the beauty of Tzu Chi’s mission in the field of medicine and he wanted to spread these ideals to more Filipino doctors.
“I believe that Dr. Lin is the right person to give us these kinds of advice about our profession. What he said are important to encourage the hospital administrators to change their culture. I hope this will open their hearts and minds to start emphasizing on bringing humane and compassionate medical service to their patients,” Dr. Brigino says.