MEDICAL doctors are often stereotyped as straitlaced men in white. But the Faculty of Medicine and Surgery has produced a number of alumni who have distinguished themselves in alternative treatments and non-medical skills. They hardly look straitlaced at all.

Nonoy Zuñiga: Music is therapy

One of the best Filipino balladeers is a doctor. A popular music icon in the ‘80s, Nonoy Zuñiga is known for his hit songs “Kumusta Ka” and “Doon lang.” Unknown to many, he is a Medicine graduate of UST and continues to volunteer in public medical operations. In 1986, he was chosen by then President Corazon Aquino to lead public health services that gave free medications and check-ups all over the country. Zuñiga also hosted GMA 7’s popular public service program, “Kapwa Ko, Mahal Ko,” giving him the opportunity to practice his craft among the handicapped. Zuñiga’s private life is as inspiring as his songs. Despite his prominence in the singing industry, he never runs out of ideas to help and serve people.

Lupo Carlota: Acupuncture cures

Topping the Medicine examination board in 1960, Lupo Carlota made acupuncture acceptable in modern science. His book, “Quantum Theory of Acupuncture,” launched in 1976 at the International Acupuncture Society Convention in Taipei, laid the scientific basis for the centuries-old art of healing. His interests in medical and scientific research helped him succeed in founding the Medical Acupuncture Research Institute of America in 1988, which provided physicians across the US with advanced training in acupuncture and also introduced Carlota’s Meridian Regulatory Acupuncture system of therapy, which helps alleviate pain and illness. As a physician, Carlota advocates new cures and alternative healing.

A compromise

Francisco Duque III: Remedy is served

Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III’s successful career was the result of his intensive training in social work. Finishing Medicine in 1982, he lectured on health services in Korea and the United States. The DOH has spearheaded successful health projects, including the P18-million funding assistance for the construction of the Las Piñas General Hospital and Satellite Trauma Center. Duque launched the “DOH-giving project,” which brings gifts and hosts fun programs for hospitalized children, especially during Christmas. Duque has also proposed partnership with local government to improve the health of Filipinos.

Vicky Belo: Beauty is health

The vanity of cosmetic surgery may be unacceptable to orthodox health care. But for Victoria “Vicky” Belo, a Medicine graduate in 1985, beauty is a health issue. To upgrade cosmetic science in the Philippines, she attends conventions on cosmetic surgery in the US and Europe. Her constant research and participation in various conferences on dermatology have helped her pioneer the newest cosmetic technologies in the country. Not only did she start the use of skin lasers using carbon dioxide in 1990, she also introduced thermage, multiclear, jet peel, and carboxytherapy cosmetic procedures in the country. Belo’s hands-on non-traditional cosmetics make her popular to celebrity clients such as Kris Aquino, Rosanna Roces, Ai Ai de las Alas, Aga Muhlach and Jericho Rosales. For 15 years, Belo has headed the leading cosmetic and surgery center in the country, the Belo Medical Group, proving her unmatched cosmetic magic. Rieze Rose T. Calbay

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