Go proposes establishing super health centers to improve the public’s access to health services

Go proposes establishing super health centers to improve the public’s access to health services

By Ernie Reyes

MANILA — Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go proposed the
establishment of super health centers throughout the country as he
seeks to further improve the Filipino people’s access to government
health services, especially during the pandemic and other similar
health crises.

“Layunin po ng mga centers na ito na mas ilapit pa sa ating mga
kababayan ang mga serbisyong medikal ng gobyerno, lalo na sa nasa
liblib na lugar at pinakanangangailangan ng mga ito,” said Go.

“Napakahalagang maisakatuparan natin ito, may pandemya man o wala,
dahil hindi naman po nawawala ang pangangailangan ng mga Pilipino
pagdating sa aspeto ng kanilang kalusugan,” he added.

The super health center is a medium version of a polyclinic and an
improved version of the rural health unit. It will have a land area of
514.3 square meters as initially planned.

The proposed centers will have the following services: lab facilities,
pharmacy, birthing facilities, out-patient department, dental
services, comprehensive PhilHealth out-patient department, and other
minor services.

The senator also suggests that these super health centers be used for
satellite vaccination sites for those Filipinos who live far from the
urban centers.

The human resource needs of the super health center will be sourced
from rural health units.

The construction and equipping of these centers will be under the
Department of Health’s Health Facilities Enhancement Program. Funds
needed for the establishment of initial supercenters are already
included in the proposed budget of DOH for next year.

“It is critical to reinforce our current health centers not just to
meet health requirements of individuals or families, but also to
tackle public health issues and the demands of the community,” said
Go.

“People in their communities are entitled to the best possible
treatment. These centers will be able to meet their healthcare needs,
which include the prevention of diseases, provision of treatment, as
well as palliative care and health promotion,” he added.

Go, who is also chair of the Senate Committee on Health, has been
advocating and pushing for measures that would improve the country’s
healthcare system. He filed Senate Bill No. 2155 which seeks to
establish the Virology Science and Technology Institute of the
Philippines (VIP) as he calls for a more proactive approach in dealing
with future pandemics.

He also filed SBN 2158 which establishes the Philippine Center for
Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC shall serve as the lead agency
for developing communicable disease control and prevention
initiatives. It will be primarily responsible for controlling the
introduction and spread of infectious diseases in the Philippines.

“These efforts are intended to avoid similar situations where poorer
nations are left with fewer medical resources, such as vaccines and
other essential drugs, to address pandemics as compared to more
developed countries that have early on invested in health sciences and
medical research,” Go previously stated.

“Katulad ng polisiya ng Administrasyong Duterte na dapat one-step
ahead tayo kung mayro’ng paparating na mga kalamidad at sakuna, nais
nating mas pagbutihin pa ang hakbang ng gobyerno upang mas magiging
ligtas ang buhay at kalusugan ng mga Pilipino mula sa mga banta ng
nakakahawang mga sakit,” he ended.

In a Senate Committee on Health hearing on Monday, September 6 that Go
presided, 25 bills were tackled at the committee level. Among these
were the establishment of five hospitals, upgrading of 12 local
hospitals, and renationalization of 8 hospitals. The Committee also
tackled bills on the regulation of traditional and alternative
healthcare systems. (ai/mtvn)

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