HEALTHCARE workers (HCWs) and non-healthcare workers (NHCWs) of public and private hospitals in Mandaue City have been waiting for nine months now for the promised incentives for those who worked during the Covid-19 pandemic.
There are an estimated 300 HCWs and NHCWs in Mandaue City who have been waiting for their Health Emergency Allowance (HEA) since September 2022, when the Department of Health (DOH) issued the implementing rules and regulations for the incentives.
Republic Act 11712, known as the Public Health Emergency Benefits and Allowances for Health Care Workers Act, grants mandatory continuing benefits and allowances to public and private health workers during the Covid-19 pandemic and other future public health emergencies.
Emmanuel Panuela, head of the dentist section of the Mandaue City Health Office (MCHO), told SunStar Cebu on Friday, June 9, 2023, that they have not received the HEA allowance until now.
Similarly, Levi Doverte, Vaccine Operation Center senior data controller and operations, said he is also waiting for the release of the incentives because the money would come in handy.
Dr. Dominga Obenza, head of the Mandaue City Health Office (MCHO), said even city workers are still waiting for the incentives promised to them for serving during the Covid-19 pandemic
“Mo submit og listing ang barangays, then i-encode namo. Ihatag na namo sa Department of Health. Ilahang i-validate. Then kung unsa ibalik sa amo, mao na jud na ang maximum ug payroll,” Obenza said of the process.
(Barangays submit lists, then we encode them for the Department of Health to validate. Then we make a payroll when the list comes back to us.)
A memorandum of agreement (MOA) has been executed between the DOH-Central Visayas Center for Health Development and the City of Mandaue for the payment of HEA.
Section 5 of RA 11712 states that the amount of HEA shall be based on the risk exposure categorization of the non-HCWs and HCWs.
Those exposed to high risk will receive P9,000. Those exposed to medium risk will receive P6,000, while those exposed to low risk will receive P3,000.
The MOA states that DOH Administrative Order 2022-0001, entitled “Covid-19 Risk Exposure Classification of Healthcare Workers,” was issued to set the parameters for determining the risk exposure of personnel in the Covid-19 response involving health facilities.
But the MOA for the HEA is still with the Sangguniang Panlungsod. The City Council must approve the mayor’s authority to sign the MOA, Obenza said.
The MOA states that transfer funds must be used for the intended purpose no later than Dec. 31, 2023.
June 11, 2023
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