2 Malasakit Centers launched on Health Workers’ Day

On Health Workers’ Day, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go recognized the contributions that frontline health workers make to individuals and communities at large as he virtually attended the launch of the country’s 107th Malasakit Center at the Luis Hora Memorial Regional Hospital (LHMRH) in Bauko, Mountain Province on 7 May.

“First off, I would like to greet ng isang makabuluhang Health Workers’ Day ang ating mga health workers. Mula sa amin ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte, maraming salamat sa inyong sakripisyo, lalo na sa panahong ito,” Go said in a video message.

“Alam namin na hirap na kayo, hirap rin kami ni Pangulo pero kayo ang nagbibigay ng lakas sa amin para paigtingin pa namin ang aming pagseserbisyo upang malampasan natin ang pandemyang ito,” he continued.

As the pandemic takes a toll on the country’s health care system, Go encouraged health workers to remain focused on their duty and reassured them of the government’s untiring commitment to promote their welfare amid the service and sacrifices they are doing to save lives of others.

“Pakiusap namin, huwag ninyong pabayaan ang ating mga kababayan, lalo na ‘yung mga mahihirap, ‘yung walang matakbuhan at malapitan ngayong panahon ng pandemya,” Go said.

Go also thanked health workers from different parts of the country for heeding the call for volunteers in areas needing additional medical personnel.

“Alam namin na kulang ang mga health workers kaya tayo nanawagan para magboluntaryo… at maraming mga taga-Cebu at Region VII ang tumugon sa ating panawagan. Talagang nakikita natin ang bayanihan spirit sa panahong ito,” he shared.

Go assured health workers that government is accelerating the vaccine rollout to provide protection to frontliners, prevent severe COVID-19 cases, and keep the health care system afloat.

“Kayo ang mga sundalo na isinasabak sa gyera kaya naman kayo ang prayoridad dito sa pagbabakuna,” he said.

As Chair of the Senate Committee on Health, he also disclosed that the country is set to receive two million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines from the COVAX Facility on Saturday, in addition to the 1.5 million doses of Sinovac vaccines that arrived earlier that day.

“Mababakunahan na ng second dose ang mga frontliners na nabakunahan ng AstraZeneca at due ngayong May at June. Tuloy-tuloy na ito. Pati ang mga senior citizen at adults with comorbidities, mababakunahan na rin (ng second dose ng AstraZeneca). Pero ang importante rito ay sana ma-cover natin ang lahat ng frontliners. Bagama’t hindi namin kayo mapipilit, sana magpabakuna kayo,” appealed Go.

Go added that continuing efforts are also being implemented to expand and construct additional modular hospitals equipped with COVID-19 isolation facilities and intensive care unit beds to address the still high number of COVID-19 cases.

“Ayaw namin ni Pangulong Duterte na may naghihingalong mga pasyente at wala silang matakbuhan. Nanawagan ako noon na magdagdag kaagad ng mga modular hospital na may mga kagamitan, para kung hindi ma-admit sa ospital, mayro’n tayong mga facilities na may oxygen tanks at kumpletong kagamitan. Tuloy-tuloy na rin ito sa mga iba’t ibang ospital, gaya ng sa National Kidney and Transplant Institute,” Go said.

To provide better and more efficient access to health care services all over the country, the Senator had served as the principal author and sponsor of the measure that became Republic Act No. 11463, otherwise known as the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019.

The said act aims to establish one-stop shops where particularly poor and indigent patients can conveniently apply for medical assistance from the relevant government agencies. The agencies include the Department of Health, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

The LHMRH is the fourth hospital in the Cordillera Administrative Region to open its own Malasakit Center, the others being Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center in Baguio City; Benguet General Hospital in La Trinidad, Benguet; and the Far North General Hospital and Training Center in Luna, Apayao. A fifth Malasakit Center was launched on the same day at the Conner District Hospital in Conner, Apayao.

As a show of appreciation for the services the LHMRH is providing during the pandemic, Go’s personnel distributed meals, food packs, vitamins, masks and face shields to a total of 650 health workers and 136 patients in strict observance of health and safety protocols following the ceremony.

Selected health workers were given new pairs of shoes or bicycles for their commuting needs while others received computer tablets for their children’s blended learning activities. Meanwhile, representatives from the DSWD also provided each beneficiary with financial assistance in a separate distribution.

Go went on to commend the various individuals who extended their support and aid to ensure Filipinos have access to essential and affordable health services.

Among those present during the activity were Secretary Michael Lloyd Dino of the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas, DOH Undersecretary Roger Tong-an, Assistant Secretary Girlie Veloso of the Office of the President, DSWD Assistant Secretary Victor Neri, DOH Assistant Secretary Maria Francia Laxamana, and PCOO Assistant Secretary Ana Marie Banaag.

He also thanked Representative Maximo Dalog, Jr.; Governor Bonifacio Lacwasan, Jr.; Mayor Abraham Akilit; Vice Mayor Bartolomeo Badecao; Councilors Tomas Tanggacan, Arcadio Taganas, and Ashley Sili; and Indigenous People Mandatory Representative Perpekto Kodod Sr.

Meanwhile, Go also said that the Duterte Administration continues to boost infrastructure development to bring economic growth in all regions of the country.

“At bago ko makalimutan, may mga proyekto rin pala, nabanggit na rin po kanina. May mga proyekto tayong mga nakalaan diyan sa probinsya, sa Besao, Bauko, Natolin, Sabangan, Sadanga at Tadian. Sana po’y makatulong ito sa pag-unlad ng inyong probinsya,” ended Go.

Credit belongs to : www.tribune.net.ph

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