Quezon, Philippines: The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) launched a first of its kind ‘Crowdsourcing for Health’ initiative using Google Maps. With the help of this initiative PhilHealth aims to maximise the benefits of social networking platform by encouraging the online crowd to map all health facilities in Philippines.
Speaking to PIA, Dr. Eduardo P. Banzon, President and CEO of PhilHealth said, “Recognising the strong presence of Filipinos on the internet, PhilHealth hopes to gather their support to pin all health facilities on an online map. PhilHealth will then display data over the facilities to better inform the public about available services in those facilities. A more informed and empowered public, we believe, is the key to the improvement of health services.”
Leveraging the free services of Google Maps, PhilHealth invites the Filipino community to start pinning both public and private health facilities on the online map. The health facilities would range from hospitals, birthing homes, private medical clinics, government health centres, dialysis centres, pharmacies, laboratories, and blood banks. Other health facilities can also be added.
Dr. Alvin Marcelo, PhilHealth’s chief information officer observed, “If you can’t pin the health facility on Google, you can opt to use the open source-based OpenStreetMap.org. Our goal is to encourage our countrymen to join the race to universal health coverage. You don’t have to be a health professional. All you need is a desire to join the “bayanihan” effort.”