DOH seeks bigger budget for facilities enhancement

THE Department of Health (DOH) asked Congress for an additional P10-billion budget for its facilities enhancement program (HFEP) for 2021.

DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III told the House of Representatives committee on appropriations Friday, September 18, 2020 that he has appealed for the additional budget for the HFEP in a letter he sent to House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano.

“We sent a letter to the Honorable Speaker with regard to our request of augmenting the approved budget on HFEP with an additional P10 billion,” Duque said.

He said they had initially proposed a P45-billion budget for the HFEP but the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) approved only P4.7 billion under the proposed 2021 National Expenditure Program (NEP).

"We appeal for the support the House of Representatives in augmenting the approved budget in the National Expenditures Program for HPEF with an additional P10-billion budget," he said.

Duque said the additional P10 billion would address the concerns of lawmakers such as “additional support for improving hospital infrastructures, rural health units, local government hospitals, health care facilities, and military hospitals.”

"As the consequences of the reduction, our goal in Covid-19 response and implementation of the universal health care will be significantly affected with delays in functionality, licensing, and accreditation of the needed heath care facilities due to lack of infrastructure and equipment," Duque said.

DOH is seeking a P203. 7-billion budget for 2021, percent higher than its 2020 budget.

The DOH is seeking to allot at least P71.35 billion for PhilHealth, P1.77 billion for the Philippine Heart Center, P1.27 billion for the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, P1.04 billion for the Philippine Children’s Medical Center, and P410 million for the Lung Center of the Philippines. (Jove Moya/SunStar Philippines)


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