Press Release
July 14, 2023

Bong Go vows support for pro-poor programs highlighting efforts to bring gov't services closer to the people as establishment of Regional Specialty Centers bill awaits PBBM nod

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go lauded President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.'s accomplishments in the past year as he underscored the urgency of continuing pro-poor programs and initiatives for the benefit of the marginalized sectors in the Philippines, echoing the policy directions of the president.

Go also pledged his continued support for the establishment of Regional Specialty Centers. This, following the passage of Regional Specialty Centers Act that he principally sponsored and is one of the authors in the Senate, which provides for their creation. The measure is now awaiting the president's signature.

In an ambush interview on Tuesday, July 11, after aiding poor residents in Trece Martires City, Cavite, Go highlighted his commitment to ensure sustained funding for healthcare facilities nationwide including the establishment of the Regional Specialty Centers.

"It's a multi-year plan. Kasama na po doon sa batas ang pagpopondo rin po na kaya nga po isinabatas natin para hindi po maantala. So ibig sabihin sa 2024 may pondo dapat, sa 2025 mayroon din dapat pong pondo," said Go.

The regional specialty centers are intended to be located in Department of Health regional hospitals across the country. Each center will host a different specialty, bringing services such as those available in Metro Manila-based hospitals like the Heart Center, Lung Center, and the National Kidney and Transplant Institute, closer to the people in the regions.

The legislation is an integral part of the health-related legislative agenda of the Marcos administration, as outlined in the Philippine Development Plan 2023 to 2028.

"Isa po itong paraan na ilapit natin ang serbisyo medikal sa ating mga kababayan, (lalo na iyong mga mahihirap). Halimbawa, 'yung (may) heart (problems), kailangan pa silang magpaopera sa Maynila sa Heart Center. Ngayon po, doon na lang sila pumunta sa DOH regional hospital. Cancer care, doon na rin po sa mga DOH regional hospital. 'Yun po ang layunin nito na ilapit natin sa mga kababayan natin," he said.

Go then expressed his anticipation for continued and increased focus on pro-poor initiatives by the administration in the forthcoming second State of the Nation Address of Marcos scheduled on July 24.

"Pro-poor programs po ang gusto kong marinig sa SONA ng ating Pangulo at dapat wala pong mahuli, walang maiwanan po towards our economic recovery," said Go.

Reflecting on the harsh effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Go emphasized the necessity of ensuring food security and job creation for all Filipinos, especially those most affected by the health crisis.

"Napakaimportante po 'yung tiyan, laman po ng tiyan ng ating mga kababayan. Wala pong dapat magutom," he said.

"Trabaho po... at suportado ko po ang ating pangulo sa mga plano niya, 'yung Philippine Development Plan... basta ito po ay makakatulong sa pag-ahon ng ating bansa mula sa COVID-19 pandemic," added Go.

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