DAVAO DE ORO HOSPITALS ALSO SERVING ‘ZERO BILLING’ PATIENTS FROM OTHER PROVINCES, REGIONS

GOV. JAYVEE TYRON UY: They are also our constituents

By ROGER M. BALANZA

About 30% of patients served under the “Zero Billing”policy by public hospitals of the province of Davao de Oro come from othe provinces of the Davao Region and nearby regions.

Under the Universal Health Law, we in the local government units are mandated to serve anybody who wants to be treated, said Davao de Oro Governor Jayvee Tyron Uy. “They are also our constituents.”

About 95 % of patients benefited from “Zero Billing” in Davao de Oro’s four public hospitals, in Maragusan, Montevista, Laac and Pantukan, said Uy in an interview Thursday, March 24, with FM radio ZRadio.

Uy bared the success of his”Zero Billing” program to dispute claims by propagandists of the opposition that his administration has not implemented the program.

Uy said his administration can well respond to free medical and hospitalization services for indigents because it has a fund under its Pagkalinga sa Bayan program.

The program is funded by P260 million this year and P230 million in 2021.

The Kalinga sa Bayan program which was started by the governor in 2019 is a special fund in support of the Malasakit Center, which urges local government units to contribute funds to the “Zero Billing” policy of the national government for indigent patients.

The Kalinga sa Bayan fund pays off excess of hospital and medical bills after indigent patients avail of financial assistance from government funding agencies like the Philippine Health Insurance System (Philhealth) and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).

According to Uy, this year’s “Zero Billing” program is backstopped by about P70 million from President Rodrigo Duterte and substantial amounts from the congressional allocation of First District Rep. Manuel “Way Kurat” Zamora.

Second District Rep. Ruwel Peter Gonzaga , according to Uy, has not contribued even a single cent to the program that would have benefited his constituents, apparently for political reasons.

In the May 9 elections, Gonzaga has fielded a line-up consisting of bets from the opposition Reporma Party against the Walang Iwanan team, led by Uy and his father former governor Arturo “Chiongkee” Uy, which is aligned with the Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP) of presidential aspirant Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte.

Gonzaga’s wife, former Court of Appeals associate justice Dorothy Gonzaga, is running against Chiongkee Uy in the governor’s race; Gov. Uy has slid down in the vice governor contest with only a token chalennge from independent candidate Alex Agustin Petalcorin, after the Commission on Elections (Comelec) disqualified Gonzaga’s candidate, former Mt. Diwata barangay captain Franco Tito. Gonzaga’s reelection is contested by former govrernor Joe Caballero of the Walang Iwanan team.

The alleged lack of “Zero Billing” in Davao de Oro under Uy is being severely criticized by a group of black propagandists known as the Otso Inidoro identified with the camp of Gonzaga.

The members of the 8-man group of radio broadcasters, which established themselves as “paid hacks” being in the payroll of Gonzaga political ally Davao del Norte Governor Edwin Jubahib, are not accredited by the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkasters ng Pilipinas (KBP) .

The group, which air their broadcast in several FM radio stations inTagum City in Davao del Norte, has publicly admitted doing propaganda work for Reporma against the HNP candidates in Davao de Oro and Davao del Norte. Among themselves, the group has amassed a total of more than a hundred libel and cyverlbel cases now pending in the court.

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