THE Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) served a total of 30,584 patients in 2020 through the Malasakit Centers established in hospitals, utilizing a budget of close to P95 million.
The Malasakit Center is a one-stop shop located in various hospitals of the Department of Health, Philippine General Hospital, and other public hospitals nationwide where indigent patients and those who are currently financially incapacitated can access medical and financial assistance from various government agencies, such as the DSWD, PhilHealth, and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, among others.
It is a one-stop shop so that those needing help need not proceed to the respective offices of government agencies, but may avail themselves of their services simultaneously in one venue and it applies a zero-balance billing system.
For patients staying in a hospital without a Malasakit Center, they may be referred to the nearest hospital where a Malasakit Center is operating.
The DSWD has assigned one social worker in every Malasakit Center to assess and assist the applicants.
At present, there are 102 hospitals nationwide with Malasakit Centers, 56 are in Luzon, 22 are in Visayas and 24 in Mindanao.