Press Release
October 24, 2023

Bong Go shows commitment to bringing gov't health services closer to Filipinos during groundbreaking of Super Health Center in Tigbauan, Iloilo

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, has remained steadfast in bringing essential public health services closer to more Filipinos through the establishment of Super Health Centers.

In a video message delivered during the groundbreaking ceremony of a Super Health Center in Tigbauan, Iloilo on Friday, October 20, Go acknowledged the role of the local government led by Mayor Virgilio Teruel, and the Department of Health (DOH) Region 6 led by Director Adriano Suba-an, for the successful groundbreaking of the Super Health Center in Barangay Bayuco in the Municipality of Tigbauan.

Super Health Centers are strategically designed to place emphasis on delivering primary care, offering consultations, and enhancing the early detection of diseases in the grassroots. This aims to bolster the healthcare sector throughout the nation, with a particular emphasis on rural communities.

Go also underscored his dedication to bridging the gap between healthcare and the people, thus alleviating the difficulty of extensive travel to access fundamental health services.

"Ipagpatuloy natin na ilapit ang serbisyong medikal sa ating mga kababayang mahihirap na walang matakbuhan kung hindi ang mga government health facilities. Para sa mga mahihirap nating kababayan, napakaimportante po nito dahil iyan po ang kanilang lalapitan po talaga. The more we should support it, the more na mag-invest po tayo sa ating healthcare system," Go said.

"Ilapit po natin ang serbisyong nararapat para sa kanila. Huwag po natin silang pahirapan. Marami po sa mga kababayan natin sa iba't ibang sulok ng Pilipinas na wala silang sariling health center. Kaya importante na mailapit natin ang serbisyong medikal mula gobyerno sa mga taong nangangailangan nito," he stressed.

Super Health Centers offer basic health services, including database management, out-patient, birthing, isolation, diagnostic (laboratory: x-ray, ultrasound), pharmacy, and ambulatory surgical unit. Other available services in Super Health Centers are eye, ear, nose, and throat (EENT) service; oncology centers; physical therapy and rehabilitation centers; and telemedicine.

Through the collaborative efforts of fellow lawmakers, local government units, and DOH, sufficient funds were allocated for 307 Super Health Centers nationwide in 2022 and 322 in 2023. DOH, the lead implementing agency, is tasked with identifying strategic areas for construction. There are a total of 21 Super Health Centers funded for construction in the whole Iloilo province.

In line with Go's commitment to promote community welfare, his office distributed 50 food packs to select indigent recipients of the town after the groundbreaking ceremony.

The senator likewise encouraged those with health concerns to seek the assistance of any of the 159 Malasakit Centers nationwide, four of which are located in the province.

Under Republic Act No. 11463, a law principally authored and sponsored by Go, the Malasakit Centers program brings all relevant agencies under one roof including DOH, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), so that poor and indigent patients can conveniently access medical assistance programs to cover their hospital-related expenses.

The two Malasakit Centers in Iloilo City are located at West Visayas State University Medical Center and Western Visayas Medical Center. Other Malasakit Centers in the province are located at Don Jose S. Monfort Medical Center Extension Hospital in Barotac Nuevo, and Western Visayas Sanitarium, and General Hospital in Santa Barbara.

Go also highlighted RA 11959, also known as the Regional Specialty Centers Act, which he principally sponsored and is one of the authors in the Senate. The Regional Specialty Centers Act plays a pivotal role in the healthcare legislative agenda of the Marcos administration, as detailed in the Philippine Development Plan 2023 to 2028. The said law mandates the establishment of Regional Specialty Centers within existing DOH regional hospitals.

To further support the development of the province, Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, also supported several initiatives in the province, such as the construction of multipurpose buildings in Barotac Viejo, completion of various barangay health stations throughout Iloilo City and the construction of a multipurpose building in the Iloilo City Public Market.

Other major initiatives he supported include the concreting or construction of roads in Badiangan, Banate, Carles, Dumangas, Lemery, Miag-ao, and Sara; completion of the barangay health stations in Leon; construction of a flood control system in Balasan; construction of a seawall in Banate; construction of the legislative building complete with facilities in San Dionisio; and improvement of the public parks in Dueñas.

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