By Charissa Luci-Atienza
Albay 1st district Rep. Edcel Lagman urged the government on Monday to ensure the delivery of free reproductive health supplies and services to poor and marginalized communities during the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
He said amid its preoccupation with its battle against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID 19), the government should also ensure the full implementation of the eight-year old Republic Act No. 10354, the Reproductive Health Law.
“As intimacies between couples who are locked down together break the barriers of social distancing, the Reproductive Health Law or R.A. No. 10354 gains more relevance today,” he said.
He cited the need for spouses and partners to avail themselves of contraceptives and other effective methods of family planning to prevent unplanned, unwanted, and high-risk pregnancies during the ECQ.
“I urge the government to continue discharging its mandate of extending free reproductive health supplies and services to those from the marginalized sectors,” Lagman said.
Lagman is the principal author of the Reproductive Health Law which was enacted on December 21, 2012.
“Drug stores and pharmacies must have adequate stocks of contraceptives and other RH supplies for those who could afford to buy reproductive health products,” he said.
He explained that under the RH Law, contraceptives which are certified by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are essential medicines under the Philippine National Drug Formulary System.
Two weeks ago, the Taguig City government started distributing condoms, birth control pills, and injectable pregnancy control drugs to its residents as a precaution against a possible rise in pregnancies during the lockdown.
City health workers conducted house-to-house distribution of birth control pills, injectable pregnancy control drugs, and condoms that are good for three months or 12 weeks.