I AM writing this letter in order to point out the positive impact of the Republic Act 11223 or the Universal Health Care Law (UHCL), which was approved by President Rodrigo Duterte last February 20 this year.
Being in public service since 1994, I noticed that providing health care services to the constituents is among the concerns of every local governmetn unit (LGU).
The underprivileged will be given an opportunity to enroll in health insurance which is handled by the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), assuring the people with affordable and quality health benefits. Before the law was created, only workers in the government and private offices are given the privilege to avail themselves of PhilHealth insurance. Also, those who are well-off individuals can enroll for voluntary contribution.
Because of that, fair health financing services can’t be felt by the poor people that challenge the government to formulate effective programs that could address the problem.
With UHCL, hospital facilities will be improved, specifically the government-funded ones because services will be upgraded in order to respond to all kinds of emergencies.
It’s sad to note that not all towns and cities in the Province of Cebu are well-equipped.
To cite one, in the southern part of Cebu, there are only several district hospitals being established and only capable of responding to minor cases. Barili and Badian towns have government-operated hospitals including the cities of Carcar and Badian.
Once the coverage of the district hospitals will be expanded, it would also help decongest the hospitals in the City of Cebu such as the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center where most of the patients from various towns are admitted. Aside from the Cebu City Medical Center, capable of accepting 100 patients, other hospitals can also accommodate more patients.
This is an opportunity for us to address the long-standing problem of poor health care services where most of the marginalized people were neglected.--JOCELYN PESQUERA, CEBU CITY SOUTH DISTRICT COUNCILOR