Catanduanes execs back lawmaker’s stem cell bill-A A +A
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
ANGELES CITY -- The move of Representative Carmelo Lazatin (1st district, Pampanga) to establish a stem cell center in the Philippines has garnered the support of the Catanduanes Provincial Board.
The measure (House Bill 5287) entitled “An Act Establishing Stem Cell Technology” seeks to establish a stem cell center in the Philippines that would strengthen research on the latest medical technology.
This latest technology is a “major breakthrough in combating deadly diseases,” said the Catanduanes Provincial Board, which recently passed a resolution in support of the bill.
The resolution, a copy of which was forwarded to Lazatin’s office, was approved by acting Vice Governor Nel Asanza and Board Members Rafael Zuniega, Edwin Tanael, Shirley Abundo, Jose Romeo Francisco, Roger Pereyra, Marilyn Tatel and Lemuel Surtida.
The Catanduanes Provincial Board said stem cell technology offers hope of effective treatment of malignant and non-malignant diseases such as cancer, heart attacks and other cardio-vascular anomalies.
It said the establishment of a stem cell research and storage center in the country would be a great help to unfortunate Filipinos who cannot afford expensive treatment, as well as in promoting stem cell treatment that is affordable and with minimal risk of rejection and side effect.
“Nowadays, many countries have started tapping stem cell potentials in health and medical research to find solutions to deadly diseases,” the resolution said.
The Catanduanes board also said the stem cell center would make the Philippines a place for open scientific inquiry and technological innovations, aside from attracting investments and jobs.
The House committee on science and technology approved Lazatin’s bill during a hearing last December 6, 2011.
The committee, headed by Representative Julio Ledesma (1st district, Negros Occidental), has decided to consolidate the bill with two other similar bills filed by Representatives Eufranio Eriguel and Anthony Del Rosario.
Ledesma said suggestions from stakeholders who attended the hearing would be taken into consideration before the bill is finalized and transmitted to the plenary.
The private sector proposed that the government should tie-up with several hospitals and other medical institutions that have existing stem cell programs, instead of establishing new stem cell center.
The fund to be used to establish a new stem cell center should instead be used for existing projects, the stakeholders recommended.
After the bill is transmitted to the plenary, the House committee on rules would then schedule it for consideration on second reading. (RGN)
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on February 01, 2012.