MANILA – Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque remembered his late mother, Dr. Adelaida Lopez-Roque, in a short video shared in his official Facebook account.
In the one-minute video, he shared that his mother was his “inspiration” behind his push for the passage of the Universal Health Care (UHC) bill in the House of Representatives.
Roque co-authored the UHC bill when he was still a lawmaker.
Recalling how his mother died of kidney failure in 2013, he said he regretted that his mother, who worked in the United States as a teacher, was not able to see the measure passed into law on Feb. 20, 2019.
“Dati na siyang diabetic pero nag-develop na siya ng kidney failure. Umuwi ang nanay ko at sa akin tumira ng mga limang taon hanggang siya ay pumanaw. Hindi rin niya nalaman na dahil sa kanyang karanasan eh nagkaroon tayo ng batas na tinatawag na Universal Health Care (She has always been diabetic but later develop kidney failure. She returned home and lived with me for five years until her demise. She never knew that because of her experience we had a law called Universal Health Care),” he said.
Roque said he owed his mother for the passage of the law meant to make a positive impact in the lives of Filipinos.
“Kung nasaan man siya ang nais kong iparating eh dahil sa kanya naisulong natin yang Universal Health Care. Para sa ‘yo ‘to, Mommy (Wherever she is, I want her to know that it was because of her we pushed for the Universal Health Care. This is for you, Mommy). I love you wherever you are,” he added.
Under the UNHC law, all Filipino citizens, including overseas Filipino workers, will be enrolled into Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), which will have expanded coverage to include free consultation, laboratory tests, and other diagnostic services.
The law also aims to improve doctor-to-patients ratio, upgrade hospital bed capacities and equipment, and establishes more hospitals in remote areas.
By vote of 222-7, the House of Representatives passed on third and final reading the UHC bill or House Bill 5784 into third and final reading in September 2017.
The Senate approved Senate Bill 1896 in October 2018 after Malacañang certified the bill as urgent.
President Rodrigo Duterte urged the Congress to pass the UHC bill during his third State of the Nation Address (SONA).
Duterte is set to deliver his sixth and final SONA next month. (PNA)