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Bong Go stresses need to ensure overall health of Filipinos

February 7, 2023 People's Journal 235 views

Senator and chair of the Senate Committee on Health Christopher “Bong” Go urged the government to prioritize the health of the country’s growing aging population by offering seniors a comprehensive and enhanced nutrition program.

“In principle po, suportado ko po ito. Importante po sa akin ang kalusugan. Isa po iyan sa aking adbokasiya, ‘yang health at sports. Maganda po ang hangarin ng panukalang batas,” said Go in an ambush interview after personally aiding indigents in Compostela, Davao de Oro.

“Suportado ko po ang anumang hakbang na magpapabuti po lalo na sa kalusugan at kapakanan ng ating mga senior citizens,” he added.

Senate Bill No. 1799 and House Bill No. 7064, which seek to provide comprehensive nutritional support to the elderly, were filed in the 19th Congress.

Under the measures, the National Nutritional Council will be required to create “a comprehensive nutrition and wellness program for senior citizens that will be made available to every municipality.” This program must be developed in collaboration with the Department of Health and local government units.

LGUs, through their local health experts, should also routinely visit all senior citizens under their jurisdiction to ensure that they are receiving a healthy diet that is consistent with the intended program and appropriate for their health state.

Meanwhile, Go stressed that the elderly are some of the most vulnerable members of society, and that as such, they require an increased level of care from society.

“The more na pangalagaan po natin ang ating mga senior citizens. Sila po ‘yung matatanda na, sila po ‘yung vulnerable,” said Go.

“At tayong mga Pilipino naman po’y family-oriented tayo. Nasa kultura na natin na inaalagaan talaga natin ang ating mga lolo at lola. Hindi katulad sa ibang bansa iniiwan na lang po sa home for the aged. Dito po, tayo hanggang sa pagtanda usually sinasamahan talaga natin ang ating mga lolo’t lola,” he added.

He then emphasized the significance of ensuring their general health by means of proper and complete nutrition.

“Bigyan po natin ng halaga ang kalusugan ng bawat isa. Hindi lang po ng ating mga senior citizens, kung ‘di ng bawat Pilipino lalung-lalo na po ‘yung mga mahihirap,” he concluded.

Earlier, Go co-authored Republic Act No. 11916 which amends RA 7432 to increase the monthly pension allowance of senior citizens from PhP500 to PhP1,000. The said increase aims to support their basic necessities and medical needs.

Under the law, the monthly stipend shall be released to qualified beneficiaries in the form of cash, direct remittance, electronic transfer, or other modes of delivery, whichever is more convenient to the beneficiary.