Bong Go: Annual medical check-up for Filipinos is a must

Published July 7, 2022, 10:14 AM

by Hannah Torregoza 

Senator Christopher “Bong” Go on Thursday, July 7, emphasized the need for all Filipinos to be entitled to a full medical check-up as part of the country’s efforts at strengthening the country’s healthcare system.

Go noted the Covid-19 pandemic served as an eye-opener on how challenging it is for low-income Filipinos to obtain even the basic preventative healthcare.

Because of this, Go, who will continue to chair the Senate Committee on Health and Demography in the 19th Congress, said he is pushing for the passage into law of the “Free Annual Medical Check-up” bill which he filed on Monday, July 4.

The senator pointed out that regular check-ups can help determine potential health concerns before they get worse. He also said early detection can give the best chance of getting treatments and avoiding further complications.

“Dahil kulang sa pera, maraming mga kababayan natin ang takot magpatingin sa doktor. Imbes na ibayad sa pagpakonsulta, ibili na lang nila ng pagkain. Kaya ang simpleng high blood pressure, minsan ay lumala pa at nahulog sa cardiovascular disease, kidney damage, atbp. Dahil mas seryoso ang sakit, mas magastos (Due to lack of money, many of our people are scared to see a doctor. Instead of a consultation, they would rather use the money to buy food. That’s why even a simple cases such as high blood pressure worsens to cardiovascular disease, kidney damage, and others. The more the serious an illness is, it’s more expensive),” Go pointed out.

However, Go noted that the government’s resources are still insufficient to resolve the problems in the country’s healthcare system.

“Kaya naman (That’s why), I’m urging my fellow lawmakers to extend their support sa pagpapasa ng (in passing the measure calling for a) free annual check-up. Sa panahon ngayon (during these times), preventive health care is essential…” he stressed.

“Palagi po natin unahin ang ating kalusugan. Tayo pong nasa gobyerno, dapat po palagi tayong one-step ahead para sa ating mga kababayan. Huwag po natin hayaan na mapuno na naman po ang ating mga hospitals. Mas mainam na agapan natin agad ang ating nararamdaman (We need to prioritize health. All of us in government should always be one-step ahead for our people. Let’s prevent our hospitals from overcrowding. It’s best to be proactive against any possible illnesses),” stressed Go.

As part of his priority bills, Go filed other health measures, including those that will provide a Comprehensive Dialysis Benefit Package to all of PhilHealth members, compensation and incentives for Barangay Health Workers (BHWs), and the establishment of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and Virology Science and Technology Institute of the Philippines.