By Jel Santos
A total of 572,357 Makati residents were given free medicines from January 1 to October 31 this year, Mayor Abigail “Abby” Binay said.
All of the residents who benefited from Makati Health Department’s (MHD) “Libreng Gamot Para sa Mamamayan” program are members of the Makati Health Plus or Yellow Card.
According to Binay, the products given include maintenance medicines, vitamins, and other pharmaceutical products.
The mayor noted that the figure was 14.47 percent higher than last year’s number of patients during the same period, which was 499, 986.
“Medicines are important in addressing health problems and improving the quality of life of our people. Our free medicine program aims to reduce household expenditures of our dear Makatizens, especially those with family members who continuously take medications,” Binay said in a statement.
The local government unit (LGU) of Makati City, she said, has spent P936 million in the past 10 months for its drug subsidy program to help defray the cost of maintenance medicines and supplements of active Yellow Cardholders and their qualified dependents. “These include Ospital ng Makati patients, city government employees, selected Makati-based national government personnel, and residents from the city’s 33 barangays.”
Meantime, Makati City paid P716 million for the medications of its beneficiaries from January 1 to October 31, 2018.
Dr. Bernard Sese, MHD chief, said the program includes medicines and pharmaceutical products for hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, dyslipidemia, enlarged prostate, gout, cough and colds, sexually transmitted infections, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, seizure disorder, allergy, ulcer, vertigo, gastrointestinal problems, and other diseases.
Also, the local government gave free multivitamins and oral and injectable contraceptives.
This 2019, Sese said the top maintenance medicines in terms of sales were Metformin for those with diabetes; Losartan for those with hypertension; Rosuvastatin, Atorvastatin, and Trimetazidine for those with cardiovascular diseases.
The top vitamins in terms of sales were Vitamin B Complex, Ferrous Sulfate, prenatal multivitamins and minerals, and Calcium plus Vitamin D, the MHD chief said.