By Ernie Reyes
Senate President Tito Sotto (PIA)
MANILA — Senate President Vicente Sotto III received a letter of appreciation from officials of the Cebu Normal University-Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (CNU-VSMMC) for shepherding the passage of a medical scholarship program into law.
Republic Act No. 11509 or the Doktor Para sa Bayan Act was signed into law in January this year. It seeks to improve the country’s doctor-patient ratio by establishing a medical scholarship and Return Service (MSRS) program for deserving students in state universities and colleges (SUCs) or in partner private higher education institutions (PHEIs) in regions where there are no SUCs offering a medical course.
Sotto authored Senate Bill No. 1 otherwise known as the Medical Scholarship Act.
“It is with our pride and pleasure to inform your good office and share with you our joy that the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Commission En Banc has approved the Cebu Normal University-Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center College of Medicine Consortium to begin accepting students for SY 2021-2022 last May 11, 2021,” Filomena Dayagbil, OIC of the Office of the University President and Medical Center Chief Gerardo M Aquino Jr., told Sotto.
“We would like to thank you and your esteemed office for all your support and assistance in making this seemingly impossible endeavor a reality and for your belief in our shared cause in training competent, compassionate, and passionate doctors for the Filipino, especially the underserved,” they added.
According to them, the CHED’s approval to allow the university to offer the medical course came at an opportune time and is immensely relevant to the implementation of the Universal Health Care Act.
While they might face more challenges in the years to come, the officials said they are confident that they could overcome the difficulties with Sotto’s continuous and unwavering support.
Cebu Normal University is a state research university in Cebu City established in 1902. The university is designated by the CHED as a Center of Excellence in both Nursing Education and Teacher Education. (AI/MTVN)