SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – The 94th Malasakit Center in the country that caters to the medical and financial needs of indigent patients was inaugurated on Friday at the Ilocos Training and Regional Medical Center (ITRMC).
“This is a one-stop-shop for poor or indigent patients who are in need of financial and medical assistance. There is also an express lane for persons with disabilities and senior citizens,” said Senator Christopher Lawrence Go who led the inauguration program.
Go is the main author of the Malasakit Center Act of 2019 signed into law by President Rodrigo Duterte on Dec. 3, 2019.
Go said through the center, indigent residents of the province can have easy access to the offices of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, Department of Health (DOH), Department of Social Welfare and Development, and the Philippine Health Insurance Inc.
“These agencies will contribute for the medical bill of indigent patients and the balance if there be any will be shouldered by the Malasakit Center. The target is zero balance for indigent patients,” he said.
Go turned-over a check worth PHP5 million as initial fund to the center.
“Malasakit Centers are available at DOH-run hospitals. Provincial government-run hospitals may also open a center but they need to abide by the rules set by the law,” he said.
He added Malasakit Centers nationwide have helped over 1.18 million Filipinos since 2019.
La Union Governor Francisco Emmanuel Ortega III thanked President Rodrigo Duterte, Senator Go, and the national government agencies for the Malasakit Center and the assistance they provided the people of the province.
Go has also distributed 10 bicycles to front-liners at the ITRMC, tablet gadgets, while the DSWD also distributed aid to the patients under the Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation (AICS).
Earlier, Go met with market vendors in the province and distributed to them groceries, vitamins, face masks and face shields, as well as 20 bicycles and 20 tablet gadgets.
The DTI gave aid to chosen beneficiaries under the Pangkabuhayan sa pagBangon at Ginhawa (PBG) and the DSWD under AICS. (PNA)