Japan Provides Life-Saving Medical Equipment to Palo, Leyte



On November 15, 2023, Second Secretary NISHIMURA Tokiko represented the Embassy of Japan in the Philippines during the official handover of medical devices to the Municipality of Palo, Leyte. The event was also attended by Palo Mayor Remedios Petilla and other key local government officials. Titled “The Project for Provision of Medical Equipment for the Rural Health Unit of Palo, Leyte”, this project was approved in 2021 under Japan’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) through the Grant Assistance for Grass-roots Human Security Projects (GGP).
The primary level laboratory of the Palo Rural Health Unit (RHU) was equipped with just essential medical equipment and no radiological device. As a result, residents, particularly the low-income citizens, receive minimal laboratory services, which are insufficient for the majority of their health needs.  With a rising population, increasing morbidity and mortality cases, as well as heightened health awareness brought by COVID-19, a second-level laboratory and x-ray services were deemed vital for correct diagnosis and astute health service delivery. 
As a remedial measure, the Embassy of Japan provided the grant amount of USD 128,197 or approximately PHP 6.49 million to the Municipal Government of Palo. The grant will cover the provision of specialized medical equipment to extensively equip the RHU in the conduct of clinically evidence-based advanced diagnosis. This will be most helpful not only during health emergencies but also in the daily provision of services to the communities.
In her message, Ms. NISHIMURA expressed her hope that the equipment will dramatically improve the productivity of the RHU as a one-stop secondary laboratory center on infectious and non-infectious diseases for the well-being of Palo residents. Ms. NISHIMURA also praised the local officials of Palo for their perseverance in nurturing their constituents.

As the top ODA donor for the Philippines, the Government of Japan launched the GGP scheme in the Philippines in 1989 to reduce poverty and help various communities engage in grassroots activities. At present, 557 grassroots projects have been implemented by the GGP. Japan believes that these projects will strengthen the friendship between Japan and the Philippines and contribute to sustaining strategic partnerships between the two countries.