DSWD 2022 budget gets House panel’s nod

September 11, 2021 Jester P. Manalastas 368 views

THE House Committee on Appropriations approved the 2022 proposed budget of the Department of the Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and its attached agencies amounting to P191.39 billion.

The P189.1 billion is for the DSWD while the rest will be divided among other agencies.

Among the DSWD’s programs, the Pantawid ng Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) has the biggesr allocations with P115 billion or P9 billion higher than this year’s funds.

It is followed by the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens with a proposal of P23.5 billion to cater the 3.8 million senior citizens.

During the budget deliberation, Magsasaka party-list Rep. Argel Cabatbat asked the DSWD if they have programs that give credit lines to laboratories, doctors and other medical service providers under the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS) Program.

DSWD Assistant Secretary Glenda Relova said there is no specific program for that but under the current AICS program, the DSWD engages service providers, which are the hospitals and sometimes pharmacies in order to serve the AICS beneficiaries.

She said it’s not a program but a partnership, a memorandum of agreement, for them to give or issue services and then the DSWD would be issuing a guarantee letter for billing and payment of services.

Relova admitted that the accreditation process in selecting the service provider is not stringent.

Cabatbat then recommended to the DSWD to closely monitor and amend its accreditation process to make it more stringent and avoid being victimized by scam syndicates.

He revealed that the syndicate that had victimized the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) has started “to migrate” to the DSWD.

For his part, DSWD Secretary Rolando Bautista committed that they would revisit the mechanisms and the procedures relative to the accreditation of any agency or organization that would make business with the DSWD.