The theme of the International Year of the Child in 1979, “Mankind owes to the child the best it has to give” inspired the concept and the impetus to provide to children a tertiary institution for expert health care. By August 10, 1979, P.D. 1631 created the hospital known as Lungsod ng Kabataan. This was inaugurated on April 29, 1980, graced by the presence of Her Royal Highness Princess Margaret of the United Kingdom. On June 23, 1980, under then the Minister of Human Settlements, First Lady Imelda R. Marcos, the hospital first opened its doors to commence delivering expert healthcare to children. Lungsod ng Kabataan is described as a “Wonderland for Children”. Thus, inside the hospital, the child is greeted by colorful, educational, cultural and historical murals that line its corridors. The rooms have various fancy beds designed as jeepneys, fire wagons, speedboats, and slippers or bakya. This aims to make the child’s hospital stay a soothing and comfortable experience, as well as informative, educational and enjoyable. The decorative rooms also distract children from their ills and pain, making their environment conducive to healing.

Seven years later, on November 12, 1986, Malacañang issued Memorandum Order No. 48, renaming the hospital as the Philippine Children’s Medical Center or PCMC.

PCMC began with 47 active medical staff composed of recognized pediatricians and pediatric surgeons who pioneered the 4 clinical services initially offered, to wit: Ambulatory, In-Patient Care, Surgery, and Critical Care. At about the same time, the Department of Laboratories and the Physical Rehabilitation Unit were also established and became fully operational.

From 1983 to 1985, PCMC expanded its activities in patient care services, Residency and Fellowship training, and in continuing medical education. Improvement in physical infrastructure and the creation of more service components became the focus toward the late 1980s. Pediatric subspecialties such as Neonatology, Pulmonology, Nephrology, Cardiology, Hematology, and Allergology under the Department of Pediatric Medicine, as well as Anesthesia under the Department of Pediatric Surgery were subsequently established.

In line with the PCMC vision to be the premier Pediatric Center of the country, the Child Neuroscience Department, the Center for Developmental Intervention, Perinatology Department and Research Department were likewise created. With its goal of strengthening the tertiary care facilities of the institution, Pediatric Dentistry, and Child Psychiatry were formed in 1989. Throughout the 1990s, PCMC continued with its tasks of setting standards of excellence in service, training, and research. Various innovative activities under the Committee of Primary Preventive and Promotive Programs were organized. Institutional highlights during the turn of the century introduced new Fellowship Training Programs such as Pediatric Radiology and Pediatric Gynecology.

Testament to its enduring commitment to quality in all aspects of patient care, PCMC was awarded the Salamin ng Bayan Award in 1992 and 1994, Buhay Award in 1995, National Public Service Award in 1997, and the Three Star Excellence Award in 1998, Quezon City Most Outstanding Organization in 2012, and the most recent achievement that it received in 2013 is the ISO Certification in Pediatric Specialized Healthcare Services and Pediatric Dental, Diagnostics and Laboratory Services.

As a government owned and operated corporation [GOCC], PCMC is administratively attached to the Department of Health, sharing a Board of Trustees with the other three specialty centers, namely: Philippine Heart Center, Lung Center of the Philippines, and National Kidney and Transplant Institute.
With the able, compassionate, decisive and firm leadership of its Executive Director, Dr Julius A. Lecciones since 2006, PCMC was accredited as a Level IV training hospital (one of only three in the country), with an authorized 212-bed capacity, serving patients from newborn to 19 years old, as well as high-risk pregnant women.

Today, PCMC’s expert service and infrastructure capabilities showcase the largest ICU for children in the country. It has the biggest neonatal intensive care unit [NICU] that is integral to the Perinatal Care and Neonatology Center. It’s Child Neurology and Neurosurgery Service Program, inclusive of a neurodevelopment center, is fully equipped with up-to-date services. It also has the most comprehensive pediatric rehabilitation facility and the most extensive pediatric multi-specialty for inpatients, as well as for clinic service to out-patients and referrals. Among these are the Cancer and Hematology Center; Adolescent Center (Teen Republic); Pediatric Lung, Heart, Kidney and Liver Center; Pediatric Critical Care Center, and; the Clinical Centers for General Pediatric Services and Surgical & Allied Medical Services, respectively.

In July 2013, the newly constructed OPD building was finally opened to accommodate the increasing number of service patients being referred to PCMC for specialty care.

PCMC also partnered with Rotary Club Makati West- Gift of Life International, an international non-government organization, which give way for two open-heart surgery missions for service patients with congenital heart diseases who needed cardiac surgeries.

Later during this year, it began its hospital-wide retrofitting, an infrastructure improvement to strengthen the building and to secure safety of clients being served.

As PCMC moves onto the next decade, it will continue to blaze the trail in its pursuit of excellence by delivering quality specialized pediatric healthcare to those who are sick as well as maintaining the quality of health of those who are well, always taking to heart the safety and well-being of all of its healthcare providers and hospital support staff.