Bong Go

PRRD signs into law measures establishing, upgrading local hospitals

April 19, 2022 People's Journal 424 views

SENATOR and Chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography Christopher “Bong” Go lauded President Rodrigo Duterte for signing into law four local hospital bills which all seek to improve the delivery of healthcare services in various parts of the country.

These include measures which will establish hospitals or upgrade existing ones in Tayabas City, Quezon; Calbayog City, Samar; Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija; and Candon City, Ilocos Sur.

“The necessity to equip and upgrade our government health institutions is underscored as we face the COVID-19 pandemic. It is also our responsibility as legislators to push for measures to address the lack of adequate facilities and equipment in our government hospitals, particularly at these critical times,” Go said.

“I laud the President for his immediate action and continuous support in our bid to improve the healthcare system in the country,” he added.

Among the newly signed measures include Republic Act No. 11702 which establishes the Southern Luzon Medical Center in Tayabas City; RA 11703 which establishes the Samar Island Medical Center in Calbayog City; RA 11705 which establishes the Ilocos Sur Medical Center in Candon City; and RA 11704 which increases the bed capacity of the Dr. Paulino J. Garcia Memorial Research and Medical Center in Cabanatuan City. DPJGMRMC is also home to a Malasakit Center.

The Department of Health will be in charge of their operations.

According to Go who sponsored the said measures in the Senate, the newly enacted laws will help address issues on delivery of public health services and will also complement the implementation of the Universal Health Care Act in line with the goal of the Duterte Administration of providing quality healthcare services for all Filipinos, wherever they are in the country.

“Sa panahon ngayon, sinisigurado namin na pagandahin pa ang healthcare services sa bansa. Lalo na ngayong pandemya, dapat lamang na mas maigi pa ang ating pagtulak sa mga ganitong panukala upang maibalik natin sa mga Pilipino ang serbisyong nararapat para sa kanila,” Go said previously.

With Go at the helm, the Senate Committee on Health has already earlier sponsored and facilitated the passage of 24 laws upgrading the existing and establishing new public hospitals across the country.

Another 11 measures establishing or upgrading DOH-run hospitals are pending signature of the President.

Go, who is a foremost advocate for improving the healthcare system and services in the country, has also been pushing for several other legislative measures concerning public health.

Among these is Senate Bill No. 2158 which establishes the Philippine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC shall serve as the lead agency for developing communicable disease control and prevention initiatives. It will be primarily responsible for controlling the introduction and spread of infectious diseases in the Philippines.

The Senator also filed Senate Bill No. 2155 which establishes the Virology Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines (VIP). The institute shall serve as the country’s principal laboratory for virology research, laboratory investigations, and technical coordination of the nationwide network of virology laboratories.

The Malasakit Centers Act was likewise primarily authored and sponsored by Go and was signed into law in December 2019. It establishes a one-stop shop in all hospitals run by DOH, where poor and indigent patients can conveniently avail of medical assistance from the government. To date, there are 151 Malasakit Centers that have helped over three million Filipinos and are fully operating in various parts of the country.