Laughter is the Best Medicine with ManilaMed

February 13, 2020 | SOCIAL MEDIA

Filipinos tend to be aloof when healthcare is brought up. Who can blame them? Medicine has always been a sore topic in the country. Because of blind optimism, Filipinos are uncomfortable with visiting hospitals and consulting medical professionals. Instead of confronting their health issues, they’d rather rely on home remedies and some hope, wishing these would work. On top of this, people are still hesitant to talk about medical topics because they have a hard time understanding it.

Manila Med is determined to change this mindset by prescribing the best medicine to the public: laughter. By making medical topics more relatable and understandable, this hospital is working towards making Filipinos feel better with healthcare that hits closer to home. 

Since its beginnings in 1965, ManilaMed has proven to be a bastion of health in the metro. Their commitment to providing quality medical care to every Manileño has been consistent throughout the years. However, this approach to healthcare is due for a change; it’s time to bring it outside of the hospital. On their 52nd anniversary, ManilaMed made it their goal to bring their comprehensive care to a wider community. And what easier way to approach a larger set of people than through social media!

With the help of Itch Creatives and FleishmanHillard, ManilaMed has taken a step to make healthcare more personal to the Millennial Manileño. This hospital is using social media to educate the public about relevant health topics as a way of encouraging them to not be scared to visit the hospital and consult with a professional. Laymanizing medical topics and using everyday language bridges the gap between the patient and the hospital. 

Using humor to engage in social media is ManilaMed’s way of showing to Filipinos that healthcare isn’t (and shouldn’t be) intimidating. Teaching the public about diabetes is easier through the use of milk tea and sugary drinks as an example. The dialogue between patient and professional is now open through the ManilaMed Health Line FB Live. People can consult with a doctor online and ask questions regarding their health without having to go to a hospital.

Medical topics should be openly talked about by everyone on a regular basis. With an open approach to medicine and health, everyone is encouraged to ask questions and to learn about their bodies. Now, Filipinos do not have to self-diagnose to feel better because there is a hospital that can readily help them, online or in real life.  

This step towards reaching more Filipinos online has proven to be productive. In the first year of working with Itch Creatives and FleishmanHillard, ManilaMed’s social media reach increased by 110%. There was also a significant growth in the people who are reaching out to ManilaMed. There was a 46% increase in messages from new users and a 64% increase in message connections. These numbers only mean one thing: more Filipinos are starting to be comfortable with conversations regarding healthcare.

Bridging the gap between patients and medical professionals is far from over, but this is definitely a good start. Our hope is that more Filipinos will be comfortable enough to consult with a doctor no matter how trivial their concern may seem—a Philippines where everyone can #FeelBetter.  

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