DOH 7’s Loreche to head Cebu City’s public hospital

·3 min read

MAYOR Michael Rama has appointed Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, chief pathologist of the Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH 7), as the new head of the Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC).

Rama told reporters Thursday, June 22, 2022, that Loreche had accepted the offer and will begin work at the Cebu City-owned hospital at the start of the mayor’s new term on July 1.

Loreche is also a consultant of the Lapu-Lapu City Government and Cebu Provincial Government.

Loreche was the DOH 7’s spokesperson for coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in June 2020.

She relinquished her post as spokesperson on June 19, 2021 after allegedly ruffling the feathers of health officials in the DOH central office for her staunch support of Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia’s “swab-upon-arrival” policy for overseas Filipino workers and returning overseas Filipinos that called for shorter facility-based quarantine, which went against the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases’ more stringent facility-based quarantine regulations.

Loreche became spokesperson of the Visayas Covid-19 Vaccination Operations Center days later.


Loreche told SunStar Cebu Thursday that Mayor Rama envisioned Cebu City to become like Singapore, and part of that is the improvement of the healthcare facilities and services.

Loreche said she accepted the offer since she shares Rama’s vision of having quality medical services for Cebu City’s residents.

According to Loreche, she is still connected with the DOH 7 as she is the head of the department’s laboratory services in the region.

It is still to be decided by DOH 7 Director Jaime Bernadas if she will retain her position, but Loreche said she will likely be replaced.

Rama said he had already instructed City Administrator Suzanne Ardosa and acting CCMC head Sonia Empinado to coordinate with Loreche. However, the mayor did not say whether Espinado would stay in CCMC or be transferred to a different office.

Loreche admitted that there is a lot of work to do, especially in achieving Rama’s vision of providing quality health care to everyone.

“I am trying to get a grasp of how it will be. I have not even been to CCMC. I do not know the current status, so I need to look into that and then prepare and then plan,” said Loreche.

Loreche said the progress of the city should also be reflected in its health and medical care facilities, especially now that the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic are around.

“I believe the least fortunate of this place should have the best medical services. ... So we need to strengthen our health and medical care facilities,” said Loreche.

Loreche told SunStar that she will serve as DOH 7 chief pathologist and consultant of the Lapu-Lapu City and Cebu provincial governments until June 30.

Once the terms of engagement and appointment in the CCMC are released, Loreche said there would be changes.

When asked if she would still hold her three current positions, Loreche chose to reserve comment until the details of her appointment and the terms of her engagement became clear.

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