‘Malasakit sa Kooperatiba’
SENATOR Christopher “Bong” Go attended the launching of the Cooperative Development Authority-Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office Partnership Program on Medical Assistance for Cooperatives (PMAC) at the CDA Main Office in Quezon City.
As part of the initiative, micro and small cooperative members with health issues will be eligible to receive financial aid from the Charity Fund established through the PCSO.
In his message, Go expressed appreciation to the CDA for caring about the plight of cooperatives in fulfillment of its mandate. In addition, he encouraged them to keep providing aid to the hopeless and the helpless.
“Ako po’y nagpapasalamat sa CDA sa inyong inisyatibo, itong Malasakit sa Kooperatiba,” he said.
“Nakakapagod rin pero mas fulfilling po ‘pag nakakatulong ka sa iyong kapwa Pilipino lalung lalo na po ‘yung mga mahihirap, ‘yung mga walang matakbuhan, ‘yung mga helpless, ‘yung mga hopeless. Tulungan po natin sila,” he added.
On March 7, 2022, CDA and the PCSO signed a Memorandum of Agreement to bolster the role of cooperative hospitals as partners while also offering medical and health services to micro and small cooperatives.
Meanwhile, Go highlighted that there are now 153 Malasakit Centers all over the country, which make it easy to access medical and financial assistance programs offered by the government.
Malasakit Centers host concerned government agencies with programs that provide medical assistance to Filipino patients, particularly the poor and indigent. These agencies include the PCSO, Department of Health, Department of Social Welfare and Development, and the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation.
Signed into law in December 2019, Republic Act No. 11463 or the Malasakit Centers Act, which Go primarily authored and sponsored in his first few months as senator, institutionalized the Malasakit Centers program.
With the enactment of the law, all hospitals run by the Department of Health all over the country and the Philippine General Hospital in Manila are now mandated to establish their own Malasakit Centers.
Hospitals run by local government units and other public hospitals may also establish their own Malasakit Centers provided that they meet a standard set of criteria and guarantee the availability of funds for the operation of their centers, including their maintenance, personnel and staff training, among others.
“Mayroon na ho tayong 153 na Malasakit Center sa buong Pilipinas. Batas na po ‘yan, isinulong ko noon, pinirmahan ni Pangulong Duterte,” shared Go.
“Nandiriyan na po sa loob ng ospital ‘yung PhilHealth, PCSO, DOH, at DSWD. Mag-aambag-ambag sila para tumulong po sa mga pasyente. Para po ‘yan sa mga poor and indigent patients, para po ‘yan sa inyo. Inyo po ‘yan, karapatan n’yo po ‘yan,” he added.
During the event, Go also lauded his fellow senator, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri, for authoring RA 11364, or the Cooperative Development Authority Charter of 2019, which was signed by former president Rodrigo Duterte.
The law reorganizes the CDA, making the agency more capable of promoting cooperativism.
“Gusto ko rin po pasalamatan ang mga kasamahan ko sa Senado, si Senate President Zubiri, sa kanyang batas […] itong (RA) 11364, itong CDA Law,” said Go.
As member of the Senate Committee on Cooperatives, Go then expressed his support for the CDA, adding that he will do his best to address their concerns.
“Ako naman bilang miyembro ng Committee on Cooperatives sa Senado, rest assured na full support po ako sa CDA, sa inyong lahat,” said Go.
“So sabi ko kina Chairman at sa lahat ng nandito, kung ano po ang maitutulong ko ay handa po akong tumulong sa inyo sa Senado,” he added.
Ending his message, Go encouraged everyone to keep helping those in need, saying, “Mayroon lang po akong habilin tandaan nyo itong sasabihin ko sa inyo habambuhay nyo ito maalala. Minsan lang po tayo dadaan sa mundong ito kung ano po kabutihan o tulong na pwede natin gawin sa atin kapwa ay gawin na po natin ngayon dahil hinding hindi na po tayo babalik sa mundong ito,” said Go.
“Merry Christmas and happy, healthy New Year, mga kababayan ko. Mahal ko po kayong lahat. Maraming salamat po,” he ended.