To make specialty health services accessible to all Filipinos, Reps. Paolo Duterte and Eric Yap recently filed a proposed measure that aims to create regional specialty centers across different hospitals in the country.
House Bill No. 6857, also known as the Regional Specialty Hospitals Act, is a proposed measure that intends to establish regional branches of specialty hospitals in the country, such as the Philippine Heart Center, National Kidney and Transplant Institute, Lung Center of the Philippines, Philippine Children’s Medical Center and the Philippine Cancer Center.
“This is to provide access to affordable and quality healthcare services to all Filipinos, through the provision of specialty hospitals in the different regions of the country,” Duterte said.
Duterte explained that the country’s great majority frequently opts for specialty hospitals in the country or the ones that specialize in a particular disease or condition, like the Philippine Heart Center, National Kidney and Transplant Institute,, Lung Center of the Philippines, Philippine Children’s Medical Center, and the Philippine Cancer Center, all located in Metro Manila.
“However, in order to afford the expertise of the hospitals’ medical professionals and its advanced amenities and equipment, patients are being encumbered by the additional expenses on transportation and accommodation for their medical needs to be catered, most especially those that are from far-flung areas or provinces,” Duterte added.
Yap, on the other hand, pointed out that the Department of Health (DOH) has crafted a development plan for specialty care as part of the Philippine Health Facility Development Plan (PHFDP) 2020-2040, which primarily includes the development of 328 specialty centers across different hospitals in all regions in the country.
“In addition, no less than the Local Government Code of 1991 (LGC) itself has devolved the health services to the LGUs with the objective of making quality health services easily accessible to every Filipino. The case of decentralizing specialty hospitals is no different,” Yap added.
Yap also said that the 1987 Constitution guarantees an integrated and comprehensive approach to health development that is endeavored to make health services available to people at an affordable cost.
The proposed measure also ensures that three years after its enactment, at least one specialty hospital should be built in the Northern Luzon, Southern Luzon, Visayas, Northern Mindanao, and Southern Mindanao.
The two lawmakers said that it would be the DOH that has the mandate on the type of specialty hospital that would be built first in the said regions in accordance with the prevailing illnesses identified in these areas.
Office of Rep. Paolo Z. Duterte
Davao City 1st Congressional District
Feb. 07, 2023