Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go on March 5, 2020, lauded family physicians for their crucial contributions to Philippine health care, hailing them as “key frontliners” in the fight for a healthier future for the Filipino people.
“As the primary care physicians in communities, schools, workplaces, emergency rooms, and hospitals, you are the first doctors that our people encounter. This makes you crucial not only in administering the best course of treatment and care among patients but also in ensuring the efficacy of our healthcare system,” Go said in his speech at the 59th Anniversary and Annual Convention of the Philippine Academy of Family Physicians (PAFP) held at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City.
“Malaking bahagi po ng trabahong ginagampanan ko at ng mga panukalang isinusulong ko bilang Senador at chairman ng Committee on Health ay hango sa naging karanasan at payo ng mga miyembro ng inyong hanay,” he said.
(A big part of my work and the bills that I am pushing as Senator and chair of the Committee on health is based on the experience and advice from you ranks),” he said.
He said these included Senate Bill 1226, or the proposed Department of Health (DOH) Hospital Bed Capacity and Service Capability Rationalization Act of 2019, that he recently filed.
Go said other measures that he filed were bills seeking to establish a national Emergency Medical Services System; to establish a Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center in every province; to expand the coverage of the Mandatory Basic Immunization Program, and to establish Advance Nursing Education Programs in universities; among others.
He pointed out that the common objective of the said bills focuses not only on treating diseases but also in strengthening disease prevention and improving the health of Filipinos.
“If we want a truly healthier future for the Filipino people, I believe that putting more resources in readiness and prevention is better than putting it in the cure. By pursuing this strategy, not only will we be able to spend far less, but we will also be able to do so much more,” he said.
“I know that this wisdom lies at the very core of the practice of family and community medicine, which is why I consider you to be an important ally going forward.,” Go said.
He also cited the Malasakit Center, a one-stop-shop for financial and medical assistance, as one of the projects that he helped establish upon consultations with family doctors.
Located in 68 government hospitals so far, the Malasakit Center streamlines the assistance provided by the DOH, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).
“Kaya naman po, inaasahan ko hindi lang ang inyong suporta kundi pati na rin ang inyong aktibong pakikilahok upang tuluyan nang maging ganap na batas ang mga panukalang inilahad ko sa inyo (It is for these reasons that I am looking forward to your full support and active participation for the swift enactment of my proposed measures),” Go said. (Jose Cielito Reganit, PNA)