Press Release
November 12, 2023

Bong Go advocates for advancement of dental profession as he attends Manila Dental Chapter's 4th Scientific Seminar in Manila City

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, attended the Manila Dental Chapter's 4th Scientific Seminar, with the theme "Synergizing Biofunctional Dentistry and Effective Communication", at Hotel Benilde in Manila City on Sunday, November 12.

The event, led by Dr. Michelle Lamug, brought together dental professionals, practitioners, and enthusiasts, who listened to featured speakers and experts talk about the latest advancements in biofunctional dentistry and the important role of effective communication in promoting dental health.

"I would like to extend my warmest greetings to the 86th Manila Dental Chapter as you gather for your 4th Scientific Seminar. It is an honor to address such a dedicated and distinguished group of professionals in the field of dentistry," said Go in his speech.

"I commend the Manila Dental Chapter for its commitment to advancing the dental profession, and for your continuous efforts in ensuring the oral health of our fellow Filipinos. Your dedication to excellence and continuous learning is truly commendable, and I believe that your work is vital to the well-being of our communities," he added.

Recognizing the importance of oral care as a fundamental aspect of overall health, Go's presence at the seminar underscored his support for initiatives that promote overall health and well-being, with a specific focus on dental health.

"I am committed to working with you and the entire dental community to ensure that our healthcare policies are responsive to your needs and that we provide the necessary support to help you excel in your field. I believe that through collaboration and open dialogue, we can achieve the best outcomes for the health of our people," Go remarked.

"We need initiatives that will shape our healthcare landscapes for the betterment of all Filipinos," he added.

Go also emphasized the need for a holistic approach to healthcare that includes oral health as an integral component. He highlighted the role of biofunctional dentistry not only in treating dental issues but also in promoting overall well-being.

"Bukas po ang aking opisina sa inyo lalung-lalo na po sa mga dentist natin. Kung ano po ang mga suggestion ninyo na makakatulong po sa dental industry, kung papaano pa po mapapa-improve through legislation. Anytime po 'yan, just approach me or my office kung may mga suggestion kayo na kailangan nating isabatas," he assured.

"Once again, I would like to express my gratitude for the work you do and for your participation in this important seminar. Your dedication to your profession is an inspiration to us all. I wish you a successful and productive seminar, and I look forward to the valuable insights that will come out of your discussions," he added.

Continuing his message, Go stressed the importance of raising awareness about maintaining good health as he encouraged the public to take advantage of the medical assistance programs offered in Malasakit Centers.

"Patuloy po akong tutulong sa pagpaparami ng Malasakit Centers sa bansa. Ngayon po meron nang 159 na Malasakit Centers. Andiyan na po sa loob ang apat na ahensya ng gobyerno para sa mga available na medical assistance programs. Target po nito na pababain nito ang inyong hospital bill to the lowest amount possible," Go, principal author of the Malasakit Centers Act, explained.

"Huwag ho kayong mahihiyang lumapit sa mga Malasakit Centers. Para po yan sa Pilipino. Nalulungkot po ako tuwing may mga nagaalangan magpatingin sa doktor dahil natatakot sila sa babayaran sa hospital. Pangalagaan niyo po ang inyong kalusugan at ang Malasakit Center ay handang tumulong sa inyo," he added.

Furthermore, Go continues to push for the construction of more Super Health Centers nationwide. Such centers will offer database management, dental, outpatient, birthing, isolation, diagnostic (laboratory: x-ray and ultrasound), pharmacy, and an ambulatory surgical unit. Other services that will be available include eye, ear, nose, and throat (EENT) care, oncology centers, physical therapy and rehabilitation centers, and telemedicine, which enables remote diagnosis and treatment of patients.

Through the collective efforts of fellow lawmakers, local government units, and the Department of Health (DOH), sufficient funds have been allocated for 307 Super Health Centers in 2022 and 322 in 2023. DOH, the lead implementing agency, identifies the strategic areas where they will be constructed.

Go also shared the recent enactment into law of the Regional Specialty Centers Act. The legislation, which Go principally sponsored and is one of the authors in the Senate, aims to bring specialized medical care closer to the grassroots by establishing specialty centers in existing regional hospitals. With this, Go expressed his confidence that the government's health services will be more accessible to Filipinos in need especially those at the grassroots.

"Marami po sa mga kababayan natin sa iba't ibang sulok ng Pilipinas ang walang sapat na health facilities na makakagamot sa kanilang mga karamdaman. Kaya importante na mailapit natin ang serbisyong medikal mula gobyerno sa mga taong nangangailangan nito," he stressed.

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