Catanduanes State University (CatSU) Officer-In-Charge Dr. Freddie T. Bernal attended the 35th  SP regular session last September 7, 2020 at the Legislative Session Hall for a very important mission.

Primarily, he appeared to the august members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) to give top priority attention to the upgrading of the Eastern Bicol Medical Center (EBMC) from Level 2 to Level 3 category.

The reason is imperative and timely. As required by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) the EBMC, as host training center for nursing, midwives and doctors should be on Level 3 status.

In this hard and trying time, it would be impractical and financially burdensome for students enrolled in health sciences and medicines to hold its affiliation in the mainland or Metro Manila in the new normal.

The OIC’s appeal is made in view of the crucial role of these would-be- health frontliners needed in our COVID-19 pandemic era—doctors, nurses, midwives, etc.

Moreover, the College of Health Sciences consisting of courses in nursing, midwifery and nutrition and dietetics, would be complemented, in fact, strengthened by the possible opening of the College of Medicine in the years to come.

As far as we know, the provincial government, with the approval of the SP, had approved an ordinance providing scholarships to students who will enroll in medicine and law in CHED-accredited schools in the country.

The OIC’s appeal is actually a follow-up or wake-up call of CatSU academic leadership led by Dr. Minerva I. Morales, who earlier in 2019, conducted a stakeholder meeting vis-à-vis various plans for 2020-2021, before COVID-19 changed our normal way of life in all aspects of life.

We hope and pray that the SP led by VG Shirley A. Abundo will come to brass tacks in addressing said appeal of Dr. Bernal, one of the distinguished alumni of the College of Education