Senator Bong Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, personally witnessed the groundbreaking of the Super Health Center in Lipa City, Batangas recently.
In his speech, Go emphasized the importance of bringing primary healthcare closer to the people.
The legislator, an adopted son of CALABARZON with familial roots being a Tesoro from Batangas, also praised the local government of Lipa City, including Deputy Speaker Ralph Recto, Mayor Eric Africa, and Vice Mayor Camille Lopez, for their efforts to boost their community’s health sector.
The Super Health Centers, championed by the lawmaker, aim to bolster grassroots healthcare infrastructure, especially in rural areas, by providing essential services such as primary healthcare, medical consultations, and early disease detection.
The senator expressed his confidence that these centers will help alleviate the strain on hospitals and improve overall healthcare accessibility.
“Ano po ang Super Health Center? It’s a medium type of a polyclinic.”
“Ano po ang Super Health Center? It’s a medium type of a polyclinic. Pwede na po dyan yung panganganak, dental, laboratory, x-ray at pwede po itong pagandahin ng LGU. Pwede n’yo po dagdagan ng dialysis machine. Sa Mariveles (Bataan) nilagyan nila ng dialysis machine. (Pwede rin) mag-decide si mayor palakihin (itong Super Health Center),” he explained.
“Dito na po gagawin yung Konsulta package ng PhilHealth, early disease detection. Makakatulong po ito sa ating mga kababayan. Mailalapit na po ‘yung serbisyo medikal sa mga nangangailangan,” Go added.
Super Health Centers offer health services including database management, out-patient, birthing, isolation, diagnostic (laboratory: x-ray, ultrasound), pharmacy, and ambulatory surgical unit. Other available services are eye, ear, nose, and throat (EENT) service, oncology centers, physical therapy and rehabilitation centers and telemedicine.
Through his efforts as vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance and with the support of the Department of Health (DOH), LGUs and fellow lawmakers, sufficient funds were allocated under the 2022 national budget for the construction of some 307 Super Health Centers.
Go was likewise successful in pushing for additional funds under the 2023 budget to support the construction of 322 Super Health Centers in other parts of the country.
In Lipa City, three Super Health Centers were funded. Meanwhile, he also supported other Super Health Centers in Batangas particularly in San Pascual, Agoncillo, Calatagan, San Jose, Malvar, Taysan, Ibaan, San Juan, Tingloy, and Lian.
Moreover, Go remains committed to bolstering the health sector as he encouraged the public to utilize the Malasakit Centers located at Batangas Medical Center in Batangas City, and at Batangas Provincial Hospital in Lemery.
Principally authored and sponsored by Go, Republic Act No. 11463 or the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019 mandates the establishment of such centers in every DOH-run hospital nationwide and in the Philippine General Hospital in Manila.
Other public hospitals can also establish their own Malasakit Centers provided they meet the standard set of criteria and guarantee the sustainability of the center’s operations.
The program has established 159 centers and has assisted over ten million Filipinos so far, according to DOH.
Go then highlighted RA 11959 or the Regional Specialty Centers Act, for which he served as a principal sponsor and one of the authors in the Senate.
The Regional Specialty Centers Act assumes an important role in the healthcare legislative priorities of the Marcos Administration, as outlined in the Philippine Development Plan for the years 2023 to 2028. This law shall create Regional Specialty Centers within pre-existing regional hospitals under the jurisdiction of DOH.
In Batangas Medical Center, there are three specialty centers, including Mental Health, Neo-Natal Care, and Geriatric Care. There will be other specialty centers set to be established inside the hospital, such as cancer care, cardiovascular care, renal care and transplant center, lung care, brain and spine care, orthopedic center, physical rehabilitation medicine, burn care, trauma care, toxicology, infectious disease and tropical medicine, and eye care.
“Batas na po ito ngayon na maglalagay po nga mga specialty center sa mga DOH hospitals.”
“Batas na po ito ngayon na maglalagay po nga mga specialty center sa mga DOH hospitals. Proud po akong ibalita sa inyo na nakakuha po ako dito ng boto na 24-0 sa Senado. Even the opposition voted for it dahil alam nilang makakatulong sa mga kababayan natin,” he shared.
Meanwhile, Go also supported the rehabilitation of several multipurpose buildings, the acquisition of multipurpose vehicles, among other initiatives to boost development and public services in the province.
Last November 9, Go personally attended the blessing and inauguration of a multipurpose building in San Juan town, also in Batangas.