Senator Joel Villanueva was joined by DOH OIC Maria Rosario VERGEIRE , Gov. Daniel Fernando, Vice-Governor Alex Castro, Mayor Eduardo Villanueva Jr. and Vice Mayor Atty. Tugna during the inauguration of the Joni Villanueva General Hospital in Bocaue, Bulacan on Monday. Photo from the Office of Senator Joel Villanueva

BOCAUE, Bulacan—Joni Villanueva General Hospital, named after the late mayor of this town who dreamt and worked hard for the project was inaugurated on Monday to finally serve the needy people of the town and other adjacent municipalities.

The P300-milllion worth medical facility is the Department of Health (DOH) first owned and run hospital in Bulacan.

First built as Joni Villanueva Diagnostic and Laboratory Center in 2020 after the death of then Mayor Joni Villanueva, the medical facility served as COVID-19 extension area of the Jose B. Lingad Memorial Hospital, a DOH region 3 hospital in San Fernando, Pampanga.  

The right side building of the Joni Villanueva General Hospital. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig

DOH OIC Maria Rosario Vergeire, Senator Joel Villanueva with Senate Health Committee Chair Senator Bong Go, Gov. Daniel Fernando, Vice Gov. Alex Castro Citizens Battle Against Corruption (CIBAC) Representative Bro. Eddie Villanueva of the Jesus Is Lord (JIL) Church, Bocaue Mayor Eduardo Villanueva Jr., Vice Mayor Atty. Sherwin Tugna and Fifth District Rep. Ambrosio Cruz and led its inauguration on Monday.

Vergeire expressed elation that they had just inaugurated a 25-bed capacity infirmary which will be upgraded into Level 1 by first quarter of 2023 and Level 2 by the end of 2023. 

The public hospital is a long dreamt project of the late mayor. When she was elected in 2016, she started pushing for the project to meet the needs of the residents particularly the less privileged ones who have to rush to Malolos or Sta. Maria for their medical needs. She died of ailment while personally leading the preparations of the relief packs to the people of Bocaue at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Senator Joel Villanueva. Photo from the Office of Senator Joel Villanueva

Sen. Villanueva fully supports the dream project of her late sister since during the beginning of the project. He had been the partner of the late mayor in conceptualizing the plans particularly in sourcing the funds.

Republic Act (RA) 11720, “An Act establishing in Bocaue, Bulacan a general hospital to be named as Joni Villanueva General Hospital and appropriating funds therefore,” was passed May this year which converts the said facility into a hospital that would serve the people of Bocaue and adjacent municipalities.

CIBAC Partylist Rep. Bro. Eddie Villanueva. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig

The Villanueva family donated 2-hectare lot property in 2017 to fulfil the late mayor’s dream project after the municipal council composed of her political opponents junked her request to purchase a land where the hospital was first targeted to be built.

Vergeire thanked the whole family of the late mayor–Senator Villanueva, Bro. Eddie, Mayor Villanueva and Vice Mayor Tugna for the land donation.

“We thank the Villanueva family for their donation of the lot property for this hospital. Without their help, we will not have this. The government has no enough resources, we cannot afford to buy lot properties to build hospitals. This signifies the good achievement because of unity and partnership of the private sector and the government,” she said. 

Fernando also expressed gratitude for the hospital as this will serve as the ninth medical facility for the people of Bulacan. He said the province has Bulacan Medical Center and 7 District hospitals all run by the provincial government.

JONI VILLANUEVA GENERAL HOSPITAL MEDICAL STAFF. Senators Joel Villanueva and Bong Go, DOH OIC Maria Rosario Vergeire with Bulacan Gov. Daniel Fernando, Bocaue Mayor Eduardo Villanueva Jr., CIBAC Partylist Rep. Bro. Eddie Villanueva, Bocaue Vice Mayor Atty. Sherwin Tugna, Bulacan Fifth District Rep. Ambrosio Cruz Jr., other DOH officials and the doctors and nurses and other medical staff during the inauguration on Monday. Photo by Anton Luis Catindig 

“This hospital was built purely because of the love and dedication of our Mayor Joni not only for the people of Bulacan but for the whole of Bulacan. We thank her and the whole of the Villanueva family,” Fernando said. 

The Villanueva family in return expressed happiness that they were given the chance to show their love and service to the people of Bocaue.

The hospital is located near the Philippine Arena along the North Luzon Expressway the municipal building in Barangay Igulot. 

Go said a Malasakit Center will also rise in the hospital in 2023.