Social Watch Philippines calls on President Duterte to support the Universal Health Care Bill | 22 Jul 2018
SOCIALWATCH PHILS·SUNDAY, JULY 22, 2018
Social Watch Philippines calls on President Duterte to support the Universal Health Care Bill
The Social Watch Philippines (SWP), a coalition of Civil Society Organizations advocating for social development, calls for the passage of a #UniversalHealthCare (UHC) Bill that will truly benefit the poor.
On Monday, July 23, the President will deliver his third State of the Nation Address #2018SONA. With the UHC Bill now certified urgent by the Palace and have recently undergone technical working group meetings at the Senate, national and local members of SWP gathered at a national assembly and declared the UHC that the people want: “We want a comprehensive, human rights-based, responsive, and inclusive health system where no one gets left behind.”
At the assembly, SWP reported the collective call of its members from the Alternative Budget Initiative Health Cluster, a network of organizations engaging the health sector budget since 2006, “when we speak of a Universal Health Care for all Filipinos, it is one that ensures health care access for all, kahit sino ka man, kahit saan ka man, kailan pa man ma de-kalidad na serbisyo pangkalusugan para sa lahat tungo sa buhay na may dignidad.”
Meanwhile, the group also hopes that these principles will be operationalized in the continuing UHC Bill processes in the next couple of weeks, through a meaningful participatory manner.
As the UHC Bill makes headway both at the legislative and executive, SWP also calls on the President and the legislators to ensure the funding for its implementation. At present, there are two bills at the Senate awaiting discussions at the Committee on Ways and Means. SWP supports the passage of Senate Bill 1599 authored by Committee on Health chair Senator JV Ejercito proposing higher tobacco tax at P90.00/pack in 2018. The proposed bill builds on the gains from the Sin Tax Law of 2012.
At present, the proposed pooling of PAGCOR, PCSO, and Medical Assistance funds will not be enough to fund the health system-wide multibillion requirements of the UHC.
#UHCLawNow #SayYesToUHC #TaxTobaccoToTheMaxNow #TaxTobaccototheMax4UHC
Social Watch Philippines (SWP) is a network of over a hundred civil society organizations and individuals engaged in research and lobby efforts in holding the government accountable for the fulfillment of national, regional and international commitments to eradicate poverty and carry out social, economic, and gender justice. SWP promotes people-centered sustainable development by proactively monitoring the progress and delivery of social commitments forged by the government and influencing the outcomes of policy decisions through citizen's participation in public finance.
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