It is not to justify colleagues in media. Admittedly, some members of the press are lacking some discipline but it doesn’t mean all are the same.
Prominent government officials and celebrities who are being hospitalized, are of course, newsworthy for media people. Reporters may tried to ignore it but since public figures are involve, they have no choice but to cover it.
I started covering hospitals or I can call it as “hospital beat” when the former President Gloria Arroyo were confined at St. Luke’s Medical Center- Global in Taguig City. Then followed by the coverage at The Medical City because the impeached Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona was also stayed there for several days.
Now, the medical condition of Philippine Comedy King Dolphy Quizon is being monitored by the media at the Makati Medical Center.
There are big differences between the three big hospitals when it comes to treating media. St. Luke’s maybe strict but they provided area for the covering press members, and the doctors of Arroyo give regular updates. And so, the media are contented with that kind of more organized and win-win set-up.
Worst are The Medical City and Makati Medical Center. Almost treating media as suspected criminals with their huge number of security guards preventing the reporters, cameramen and photographers to at least come nearer to the main entrance. They not even allowed reporters to go to the restroom inside the building? How the guards pushed away media into the street are uncalled for? It was like a long waiting game without the assurance that someone would talk to the media for updates.
Media entities would understand the dilemma and concerns of the hospitals, they did not want to scare or give inconveniences to other patients and visitors. But can they set-up a system to accommodate media coverage, especially that having prominent patients on their hospital is inevitable?