Featured Doctor

MAGLONZO, Prof Eva "Irene"

Philippines : family doctor

Irene is the president of the Philippine Academy of Family Physicians.

What work do you do now?

As a health care provider, I am a presently a private Family Medicine physician in Manila at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) where I am part of a group practice and admit patients in the hospital. I also have my outpatient clinic in my hometown in Calamba, Laguna. I also do Home care being an accredited physician of Home Health Care. In these different settings, apart from medical interventions, I also conduct individual counseling and family meeting.

As an educator, I am a Professor at the University of Santo Tomas (UST) where I teach Preventive, Family and Community Medicine to first year, third year and fourth year students. I also handle administrative positions being the Secretary of the Department of Medical Education. I conduct Faculty workshops in the university and other medical schools in the Philippines. I prepared the Outcomes based education curriculum in Preventive, Family and Community Medicine for first year students in our university and I am part of the working group who finalized the PAFP outcomes based curriculum for residents and medical students.

In the hospital at UST and PGH, I train Family Medicine residents and Medical interns.

Other interesting things you have done (in brief)?

As a leader and manager, I joined various organizations like the Philippine Academy of Family Physicians (PAFP) and Philippine College of Geriatric Medicine (PCGM). In the PAFP, I am currently the President. Prior to this, I have been Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and Chair of the Specialty Board in Family Medicine.

In the Specialty Board, I introduced the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE). In PAFP, our current project is “Kalusugan ng Pamilya mo, alaga ko” in line with our mission PAFP C.A.R.E.S.

As an advocate, I have been part of the Working group of the PCGM and DOH in the Health Policies for older persons. I have volunteered to do Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment in various nursing homes, do lay fora and participate in wellness program for the community.

I have been given the following awards: UST Thomas Award for Outstanding alumni in Medical education- 2012; finalist for PCHRD Research Mentor award- 2009

A Family Medicine physician can be a 5 star doctor doing clinical practice, education and counseling, research, advocacy work, leadership and management. My training in Family Medicine, Geriatric Medicine and my Masters in health Professions Education helped me fulfill these different roles. I am proud to be a Family Physician.

What is it like to be a family doctor in the Philippines?

Here in the Philippines, there are various opportunities for Family Medicine doctors. One can be a private practitioner by having your own clinic or being in a group practice. Aside from the outpatient clinic, one can be a first contact physician at the emergency room or admit patients to the hospital. There is also an opportunity to do home care, work with the Department of Health, Health maintenance organizations and other government agencies.

Those who don’t do clinical practice opt to teach, do research or handle administrative positions in the government, pharmaceutical companies or school and occupational setting.

As Family Medicine physician, we are able to apply the biopsychosocial approach. Aside from the medical management for our patients, we do counseling and family meeting for psychosocial issues detected among patients and their family members.

What are your interests outside work?

My interests are writing and research. As a researcher, I have written the following books: The Filipino family Physician; Geriatric Medicine: Principles and concepts; Practical Approach to Common Diseases; Family Medicine review. I am also the associate editor of the Textbook in Family Medicine Vol 1 and 2 published here in the Philippines.

I have published research in medical education, family medicine and geriatric medicine in international and national journals. My other interest is advocating for family wellness, rights of older persons and address stigma of Hepatitis B patients.