Duterte vows to equip health frontliners with proper medical supplies

Published June 25, 2021, 3:05 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

The government is committed to look after the welfare of the country’s health workers, and provide them with supplies needed to combat the pandemic, President Duterte said Thursday.

President Rodrigo Duterte deliver a speech during the ceremonial signing of several laws in Malacañang on June 24, 2021. (Malacañang)

The President said the government would continue to work with Congress on measures aimed at improving the plight of the medical frontliners. Duterte made the commitment after signing several laws, including measures on increasing the bed capacity of some public hospitals, in Malacañang Thursday.

“As we pass these health-related bills into law, let me assure our dedicated medical frontliners [that] this administration cares about your plight and we continue to work with Congress to equip you with proper and functional medical supplies and logistics,” he said in his remarks.

“I am therefore directing all our government agencies to continue to work together in implementing the newly enacted and existing healthcare laws,” he added.

Government agencies have also been directed by the President to apply the whole-of-nation approach “in our endeavors to ensure an inclusive and seamless response to the current challenges facing the nation.”

The President also thanked Congress for the passage of key laws aimed at improving the quality of life for Filipinos.

He said the signing of the laws was “a testament to the cooperation between Congress and this administration in providing our people with equitable and sustainable service, especially in the areas of quality healthcare and education.”

“Thirteen of these laws are health-related and are all very crucial in strengthening the capacity of our healthcare system as we continue to overcome the current pandemic,” he said.

He said establishment of new public hospitals would make quality medical services more accessible to the people especially those living in far-flung places.

“Increasing the bed capacity of existing public hospitals would likewise greatly augment our inventory of [much]-needed hospital beds that we badly need as we deal with a pandemic,” he said.

Among the news laws signed by the President are measures increasing the bed capacities of Naguilian District Hospital, Rosario District Hospital, Sinait District Hospital, East Avenue Medical Center, and Lying-in Clinic in Rizal, Palawan.

Also inked by the President are laws on establishing the Bacolod City General Hospital, Davao Occidental General Hospital, Conrado Estrella Regional Medical and Trauma Center, and Senate President Neptali Gonzales General Hospital.

The laws on converting the Medina extension hospital into First Misamis Oriental General Hospital, converting Schistosomiasis Control and Research Hospital into Gov. Benjamin Romualdez General Hospital, and renaming Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center into Eastern Visayas Medical Center were also signed by the President.

The three non-health laws signed were measures converting the Basilan State College into Basilan State University, renewing the franchise of Baycomms Broadcasting Corp. for another 25 years, and reapportioning the province of Bataan into three districts.