/ 2 March 2021

THREE universities and colleges offering medical and allied health programs in Cebu have applied to conduct limited face-to-face classes, the Commission on Higher Education in Region 7 said.

These schools are the University of Cebu-Mandaue, the Southwestern University Phinma and the Cebu Institute of Medicine.

“We have only three, so far, that submitted their applications. These are for clerkship, for hospital-based training of our medical students,” Maximo Aljibe, CHED-7 director, said.

Aljibe said schools must be willing to assume responsibilities to comply with requirements, including the prescribed minimum health and safety protocols.

Based on the joint circular issued by CHED and the Department of Health on February 10, schools intending to reopen must submit their applications to the CHED regional office.

“The authority or the permit to be issued will be valid for one school year. Students who will attend the face-to-face classes will be registered to the medical insurance program of the state health insurer,” Aljibe said.

If the school still has to improve retrofitting, the official stressed that the school will implement flexible learning while another on-site inspection may be conducted once improvements are done.

However, he said that they will not conduct on-site inspection for clerkship in schools with base hospitals.

CHED Chairman Prospero de Vera III said that schools will be inspected to determine their readiness for face-to-face classes.

He said CHED officials will check the retrofitting of school buildings, facilities and classrooms including hallways, stairs and elevators to ensure compliance with health and physical distancing protocols.

Only students aged 20 and above will be allowed to attend physical classes.