Press Release
November 16, 2023

Bong Go assists fire victims in Cordova, Cebu

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go provided assistance to families whose houses were damaged by a fire incident on November 8 in Barangay Bangbang, Cordova, Cebu.

Go's team coordinated with the local government unit (LGU) of Cordova headed by Mayor Cesar "Didoy" Suan and provided financial assistance, water containers, grocery packs, masks, vitamins, snacks, shirts, and balls for basketball and volleyball to three households gathered at the municipal hall on Friday, November 10.

Meanwhile, representatives from the National Housing Authority (NHA) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) were also present to assess potential beneficiaries for their respective housing and livelihood assistance programs.

In a video message, Go reiterated the need to implement better recovery efforts for those affected by various crisis situations.

Go authored and co-sponsored Republic Act 11960, or the One Town, One Product (OTOP) Philippines Act, which institutionalizes the OTOP Philippines Program. The program is specifically designed to nurture the growth of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) across the country.

The OTOP Program revolves around the concept of identifying and promoting unique products from different towns and municipalities. By doing so, it not only fosters entrepreneurship but also harnesses local resources while preserving the nation's cultural heritage. This approach helps micro-businesses gain visibility, access markets, and enhance their competitiveness, thereby contributing to economic resilience.

Go recently co-sponsored Senate Bill No. (SBN) 2451 or the Ligtas Pinoy Centers bill which was primarily sponsored by Senator Jinggoy Estrada. The measure, which was based on the Mandatory Evacuation Center bill that Go earlier filed, aims to establish permanent, well-equipped evacuation centers nationwide.

"Alam n'yo, napapanahon na po na magkaroon tayo ng maayos na evacuation center sa bawat lugar. Hindi lang po tuwing puputok ang bulkan, kundi tuwing may bagyo, sunog, lindol o ano pa mang sakuna para komportable, ligtas at mas mabilis makabangon ang apektadong komunidad," he said.

Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, said that the government's medical assistance programs are conveniently accessible in seven Malasakit Centers in the province.

Signed into law in 2019, the Malasakit Centers Act, which was principally authored and sponsored by Go, institutionalized the Malasakit Centers program to ensure that indigent patients have convenient access to medical assistance programs.

In Cebu City, Malasakit Centers are located at Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC), St. Anthony Mother and Child Hospital, and Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC).

Meanwhile, there are other Malasakit Centers at Cebu Provincial Hospital in Carcar City, Lapu-Lapu City District Hospital, Eversley Childs Sanitarium and General Hospital in Mandaue City, and Talisay District Hospital in Talisay City.

There are now 159 Malasakit Centers nationwide which have assisted over seven million Filipinos, according to the Department of Health (DOH).

Go mentioned that Super Health Centers are set to be established in the province. With the support of DOH, LGUs, and fellow lawmakers, Go helped secure sufficient funds in the 2022 and 2023 national budgets for the construction of more than 600 Super Health Centers across the country.

Designed to focus on primary care, consultation, and early detection, Super Health Centers aim to fortify the healthcare infrastructure, particularly in rural communities.

Go also brought attention to 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.

Currently, there are three Regional Specialty Centers inside VSMMC, including cardiovascular care, neonatal care, and trauma care. There will be other specialty centers set to be established inside the hospital, such as renal care and transplant center, lung care, brain and spine care, orthopedic center, physical rehabilitation medicine, infectious disease and tropical medicine, mental health, burn care, toxicology, cancer care, geriatric care, eye care, and dermatology care.

Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, likewise supported the funding of various projects in the province, including the construction of multipurpose buildings in Barili, Cordova, Ginatilan, Pilar, Tabogon and Talisay City; improvement of existing roads in Alcantara, Alcoy, Alegria, Asturias, Balamban, Boljoon, Borbon, Carmen, Madrilejos, Malabuyoc, Minglanilla, Moalboal, Pinamungajan, Sibonga, Sogod, Tabogon, Tabuelan, Carcar City and Naga City; improvement of flood mitigation structures in Catmon and Tuburan; installation of street lights in Asturias, Compostela and Daanbantayan; and acquisition of ambulance units for Madridejos and Naga City.

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