#SONA2022 FACT CHECK: Build specialty hospitals around the country to strengthen PH healthcare system
Marcos Jr. said his administration will build specialty hospitals around the country to strengthen the country’s healthcare system
While baring his policies on the health care system, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. promised that his administration will be bringing health care closer to the people by building specialty hospitals outside the National Capital Region (NCR). Among the specialty hospitals that the newly-elected president is planning to build are heart centers, lung centers, children’s hospitals, and kidney transplant institutes.
“Napakinabangan natin nang husto ang malalaking specialty hospitals gaya ng Heart Center, Lung Center, Children’s Hospital at National Kidney and Transplant Institute. Kaya maliwanag na na hindi lang dapat dito sa National Capital Region, kundi maging sa ibang parte ng bansa […] Maliwanag na hindi lamang dapat dito lamang sa National Capital Region kundi maging sa ibang parte ng bansa kailangan magdagdag ng ganitong uri ng mga pagamutan.” Marcos Jr. said.
What he failed to mention, however, is how the specialty hospitals he mentioned are actually pet projects of his mother, Imelda Marcos.
Beyond this, as IBON Foundation noted, there are several issues that need to be addressed first when it comes to improving the country’s health system. “Specialty hospitals outside NCR, local clinics, health professionals’ welfare, enough medicines sound good, but will health privatization stop? Will PhilHealth be reformed? Will Filipinos be spared of having to spend huge out-of-pocket on this very basic social service?” IBON Foundation tweeted after the SONA.
WHY IT MATTERS:
The Marcoses have a long history of illegally amassing government funds through the pursuit of infrastructure projects. As analysts have noted, at the time when the whole world is still under a pandemic, it is essential for the new president to recognize the deeply-rooted problems in the country’s healthcare system and look beyond infrastructure as a blanket solution. – Hyacinth Estrada
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