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SOURCE: Press and Public Affairs Bureau



23 February 2021 06:30:23 PM

In a joint meeting on Wednesday, the Committee on Government Reorganization presided over by its chairman Rep. Mario Vittorio Mariño (5th District, Batangas) and Committee on Health presided over by its Vice Chairperson Rep. Ruth Mariano-Hernandez (2nd District, Laguna), agreed to create a technical working group that would consolidate House Bills 604, 958, 7168, 3949 and 7101, which seek to convert the National Center for Geriatric Health (NCGH) into a corporate body. The TWG will be chaired by Hernandez with Rep. Ron Salo (Party-list, Kabayan) as co-chair. The joint panel approved the motion of Baguio City Rep. Mark Go to use HB 3949, authored by Deputy Speaker Bienvenido Abante Jr., as the reference bill for the consolidation of the measures. House Bill 3949 proposes to convert the National Center for Geriatric Health (NCGH) into a corporate body to be known as the National Geriatric Health and Research Institute. It would be attached to the Department of Health (DOH) for the primary benefit of senior citizens. The bill provides rhat the bed capacity of the hospital would be raised from 50 to 100,. Abante said he is supportive of the DOH substitute proposal to establish the National Center for Geriatric Health under the DOH and appropriate funds therefor. The DOH proposal was presented during the meeting by Dianne Melody de Roxas, a representative of the DOH- Health Facility Development Bureau. “With this recommendation we can assure quality and affordable geriatric speciality services for all Filipinos aligned with the Philippine Health Facility Development Plan 2020-2040,” De Roxas said. Presently, De Roxas said the NCGH is operating as an extension of the Out-Patient Geriatric Department of the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center. Abante said the NCGH, the country’s first premier specialty hospital catering to the specific healthcare needs of the elderly was established through his initiate. “Unfortunately for the past nine years, the services of the NCGH were not extended to our elderlies as envisioned. It is therefore the aim of HB 3949 to convert the NCGH into the National Geriatric Health and Research Institute, with the objective of equipping, maintaining, administering, and operating it as an integrated medical institution that would specialize in geriatric health services,” Abante said. For consolidation with HB 3949 are HB 604 authored by Rep. Resurreccion Acop (2nd District, Antipolo City), HB 958 by Salo, HB 7101 by Deputy Speaker Rufus Rodriguez, and HB 7169 by Rep. Alfred Vargas. (5th District, Quezon City).