Press Release
September 24, 2021

Committee on Finance (Subcommittee "I") - Covid19 Health Workers Benefits

Sen. Dela Rosa: Good morning to everyone. Before anything else, I would like to express my sincere thanks to the good chairperson of the Committee on Finance, Senator Sonny Angara, for hearing these bills today. These bills have one and only one intent: to make sure that our healthcare workers are well-compensated especially as they find themselves at the frontlines of this global pandemic.

It was in November of 2020 that I discovered that I, along with my eldest daughter, tested positive for COVID-19. Needless to say, it was a difficult and challenging time for us. I realized, Mr. Chairperson, the value of being able to breathe freely and fully. I realized the value of a strong immune system. Most importantly, I realized the incomparable sacrifice of our healthcare workers. I saw this in the person of my daughter, Liz. She, herself, is a licensed nurse, and even when we were both sick, halos hindi na niya iniisip ang sarili niya. I was always her top priority, kahit na nawalan na siya ng panlasa at pang-amoy. Excuse me, Mr. Chairman. Medyo nawawala ako. Medyo na-cacarried away ako dahil sa experience natin. Alam ko dinaanan mo rin ito.

Sen. Angara: Yeah. yeah. Understandable ho. Understandable, your honor.

Sen. Dela Rosa: Sorry. Sorry, everyone. She is just one of many selfless healthcare workers, and the bulk of our COVID-19 response rests on their tired shoulders. And while we can call them modern-day heroes and lavish them with praises on social media, these will not be enough. Especially when we know that their own lives, and the lives of their loved ones, are at stake.

Beyond being called heroes, our healthcare workers are entitled to just compensation and proper care. If this is one way for me to concretely express my gratitude to my daughter, and to all the healthcare workers who are the most vulnerable during these times, then I personally commit myself to ensuring the passage of these bills. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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