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Davao City, Philippines

Go files bill to improve capacity of DOH hospitals

January 13, 2020 - Monday 6:01 PM by Ruth Palo

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DAVAO CITY -- Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go has filed a legislative measure to help improve the capacity and service capabilities of public hospitals in responding to the needs of the people. 

Go seeks to authorize the Department of Health (DOH) to set and approve the bed capacity and service capability of the 73 DOH-retained hospitals in different parts of the country.

Senate Bill No. 1226, or the proposed DOH Hospital Bed Capacity and Service Capability Rationalization Act of 2019, aims to “expedite the process for improving the capacity and capability” of the hospitals.

“Under current regulations, a DOH hospital can only increase its bed capacity and improve its service capability through legislation,” Go said in a statement.

He said there should be a more efficient way of enhancing capabilities of public hospitals and, at the same time, empowering the DOH to fulfill its mandate of improving healthcare in the country. 

“Ayusin po natin ang proseso para matulungan ang ating mga kababayan na nangangailangan magpagamot. Kapag maayos ang kalusugan ng mga Pilipino, mas dadali ang pag-asenso ng bayan,” he said.

SB 1226 requires the DOH to “provide Congress, through the Committee on Health of the House of Representatives and Committee on Health and Demography of the Senate, an annual report of hospitals with approved bed capacities, along with the necessary funding requirements.”

The report will be the basis of Congress in including the funding requirements of the hospitals in the annual General Appropriations Act.

SB 1226 also obliges the DOH to “develop the Philippine Health Facility Development Plan (PHFDP) to guide the modernization and development plans of all government health facilities, and in order to access capital outlay investment through the Health Facilities Enhancement Program of the DOH and other national government capital outlay investment mechanisms.”

The bill further directs the Secretary of Health to “include in the Department’s programs the funding requirements for the adjustment in bed capacity and service capability of each DOH hospital in accordance with the PHFDP and the hospital’s modernization and development plan.”

Go said he filed the bill because Republic Act No. 11223, otherwise known as the Universal Health Care Law, mandates “a people-oriented approach for the delivery of health services that is centered on people’s needs and well-being.”