Press Release
February 26, 2024

Promoting healthcare access in the grassroots, Bong Go provides additional support to indigents during Sibalom, Antique medical mission

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go offered significant support to a medical and dental mission organized by Vice Governor Ed Denosta in Sibalom, Antique on Friday, February 23, as he sent his Malasakit Team to distribute additional aid to the beneficiaries.

In his message, Go lauded the initiative, saying that by providing free medical services, the mission directly contributes to the well-being of families through medical consultations and early disease detection, saving them from the potentially crippling costs of medical care.

"In our country where many are just a hospital bill away from poverty, this kind of intervention is not just medical aid but a form of economic support," he said.

The presence of Malasakit Centers throughout the country, a brainchild of Go, further amplifies this impact. Designed to streamline access to medical and financial assistance from the government, these centers have been instrumental in easing the burden on low-income families.

In Antique, a Malasakit Center is situated at Angel Salazar Memorial General Hospital in San Jose de Buenavista town.

"Ang Malasakit Center ay one-stop shop. Nasa loob na ng ospital ang apat na ahensya ng gobyerno... tutulungan kayo sa babayaran sa inyong pagpapagamot sa pampublikong mga ospital," explained Go, who is the principal author and sponsor of Republic Act No. 11463 or the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019.

There are 159 Malasakit Centers nationwide, to date. According to the Department of Health (DOH), these centers have helped around ten million indigent Filipinos nationwide.

The medical mission was held at in a gym in Sibalom where approximately 350 beneficiaries received assistance. Go's Malasakit Team provided snacks and shirts. Meanwhile, select beneficiaries also received basketball and volleyball balls and shirts.

Go's advocacy does not stop at immediate relief. The senator, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health, is also pushing for the establishment of more Super Health Centers nationwide. These centers are envisioned to enhance the availability of basic healthcare services, thereby elevating the quality of medical care accessible to Filipinos in the grassroots.

Through the collective efforts of the DOH, led by Secretary Teodoro Herbosa, local government units, and fellow lawmakers, sufficient funds have been allocated under the DOH for the construction of 307 Super Health Centers in 2022, 322 in 2023, and 132 in 2024. DOH, as the lead implementing agency, identifies the strategic areas where these Super Health Centers will be established.

In Antique alone, funds have been allocated to construct four Super Health Centers.

Go said that the socio-economic implications of these initiatives are vast. Healthier communities are more productive, less burdened by healthcare costs, and more resilient to economic challenges.

In line with his advocacy to support the development of the province, Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, supported the purchase of multicabs in Laua-an, the improvement of a public park in Belison, the expansion of the water system in Libertad, the construction of a bridge in Patnongon, the purchase of an ambulance, the construction of a flood control structure in San Jose, and the construction of a covered court in San Remigio, among others.

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