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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Mayor wants to expand health services coverage to city constituents, issues EO

THE Cebu Government is expanding its health services program.

Mayor Tomas Osmeña issued an executive order (EO) providing more coverage under the City Hospitalization and Medicine Program (Champ).

“It is declared the policy of the City to adopt an integrated and comprehensive approach to health development, which shall endeavor to make essential goods, health and other social services available to as many constituents as practicable,” the mayor said.

“The City recognizes the contribution of all residents to the spiral growth of our local economy and, therefore, all of them deserve same attention, privileges and support from the City in times of illness or sickness with emphasis on the young, old specially the underprivileged,” he added.

Guidelines

Based on the six-page EO 2, or the order establishing the guidelines for Champ penned last Aug. 1, Champ will no longer just cover the financial assistance for the medical and hospital expenses of the city residents, but will now include the daily or scheduled delivery of maintenance medicines for hypertension, diabetes and arthritis, among others.

Those who can avail themselves of the maintenance medicines are permanent residents who are diagnosed with medical condition and were prescribed medicines by a government physician for outpatients or by the attending physicians for the admitted patients.

Aside from this, Osmeña included in the Champ responsibilities the giving of Philhealth insurance to indigents. In 2015, the City enrolled 10,000 residents, and it continues to pay for their annual premium.

The EO states that the Department of Social Welfare Services (DSWS) will pre-qualify all those enrolled in Philhealth and will facilitate the documentation and eventual issuance of the Philhealth cards.

But on top of giving Philhealth insurance to indigents, Osmeña decided to include also the giving of health insurance to the city’s elected officials, department heads and other key personnel of City Hall.

The insurance will be good for a year.

Other expenses

Osmeña also seeks to shoulder the laboratory and diagnostic procedures and other medical services for outpatients and admitted patients.

He wants the City to give one dose of anti-cervical cancer vaccine to employees of the City as well as barangay officials.

On top of these, two free anti-rabies vaccines will be given to animal bite victims.

Its beneficiaries will have to be endorsed by the City Health Department or the Animal Bite Center. Lastly, Osme?a now included in the Champ program the giving of medical devices such as orthopaedic steels, implants such as hearing aids, and other accessories for outpatient and admitted patients.

He tasked the DSWS to be the main implementing office of Champ and for the formulation of the legal procedures, rules and regulations for the program.

“Matters involving questions or conflicting interpretations on any provisions of this EO shall be resolved by the Champ head or the City Legal Office upon endorsement or referral for legal opinion by the Champ head,” said Osmeña.

On where funds for the program will be taken, the EO states an annual appropriation will be included in the City’s annual budget.
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