Philippines' poorest cling to wretched hospital deathbeds

An elderly patient exercising in his bed at a ward of the Philippine Orthopaedic Centre in Manila. The state-run Philippine Orthopaedic Centre, a cramped and dizzying maze of rickety stretchers that spill out of humid wards into dingy hallways, has treated tens of thousands of patients for free since it opened in 1945. But it is slated to close after a private firm last year won a contract to replace it with an expanded new facility, part of a multi-billion-dollar privatisation programme by President Benigno Aquino's administration.
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