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PCSO allots P6 billion for UHC, Malasakit Centers

The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office will allot P6 billion for the Universal Health Care program and Malasakit Centers next year.

“Nagagalak kami na ipaalam na effective next year, 100 percent we support the [Universal Health Care]. May pondo. [We are glad to inform that effective next year, we are giving 100-percent support to the Universal Health Care. There are funds for that],” PCSO General Manager Royina Marzan-Garma told reporters in a press briefing in Mandaluyong City on Wednesday.

Following the enactment of the law establishing Malasakit Centers, the PCSO allotted P3.1 billion for these centers.

“Since the Malasakit [Centers] Act is now a law, the hospital partners will be present in Malasakit Center. We allotted funds for that, P3.1 billion na pwedeng ma-access ng ating kababayan (which the public can access) through Malasakit Center,” she said.

“Yan ang magiging direction ng PCSO next year, ito po ay naaayon sa charter [That will be the direction of the PCSO next year and it was based on the charter],” she added.

Earlier this month, President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday night signed into law a bill seeking to establish Malasakit Centers in all hospitals run by the Department of Health across the country.

Currently, there are over 50 Malasakit Centers nationwide.

Meanwhile, the fund for the UHC came from the estimated and projected sales of the PCSO, Garma said.

However, Garma said PCSO’s medical assistance program would be limited since a large part of its revenue would be given to UHC.

“Since we are giving a certain amount for UHC, there will be a limitation for the medical assistance program. It will focus on

catastrophic (cases), like (chemotherapy) and dialysis,” Garma explained.

President Rodrigo Duterte signed the UHC law February this year to ensure that every Filipino, including overseas Filipino workers, are eligible to preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative, and palliative care.

Under the law, all Filipino citizens are automatically enrolled into the government’s health insurance program.

Members who have the capacity to pay are considered direct

contributors while the indigents and senior citizens are categorized as indirect contributors and are sponsored by the government.

Next year, PCSO General Manager said the agency is targeting to generate P52 billion.

“Our mandate is to generate funds for charity so we will focus on raising more funds for next year,” she said.

She added that 40 percent of the funds that they generate will go to the Universal Health Care to support the PhilHealth insurance of indigents and for the procurement of medical transport vehicles.

Garma said the PCSO will introduce more games in 2020 at the same time will also strengthen their campaign to only patronize legitimate number games.

She added their focus next year will be on sales and marketing in order to generate more funds to support more government projects.

Crucial to the plan, she said, is the opening of more provincial branches throughout the country next year. For this purpose, she said they have already started hiring employees for the planned expansion.

Garma said they are currently reviewing the fees and the process in franchise applications to streamline their system.

“The process is complicated and in order to comply with the directive of the President relative to “ease of doing business,” we need to remove other unnecessary requirements and reduce the cash bond needed in the opening of the lotto outlet,” she said.

The PCSO serves as the principal government agency for raising and providing funds for health programs, medical assistance and services, and charities of national character.

The Individual Medical Assistance Program (IMAP) is considered the flagship program of the PCSO which was institutionalized in 1995 to provide timely and responsive financial assistance to individuals with health-related problems.

Aside from the IMAP, the PCSO’s other charity programs include the Endowment Fund Program, Institutional Partnership Program, Procurement of Medical Equipment, AFP/PNP Health Facilities Capability Building Project, Calamity Assistance Program, Milk Feeding Program, Integrated Health for Overall Productivity and Empowerment (I-HOPE), and Out-Patient Services Program (Medical and Dental Services), among others.

Garma urged the public to keep on patronizing the products of PCSO as a large chunk of its revenue goes to charity programs.

Meanwhile, Garma said the agency does not approve online bingo games.

Garma’s remarks came after an anonymous complainant claimed that someone from the PCSO approved the operation of a bingo game online.

“Wala pong larong ina-approve ang PCSO na bingo online [PCSO is not approving bingo games online],”Garma during a press briefing at PCSO head office in Mandaluyong City.

She said the complainant, whose identify she did not reveal, claimed that she has the backing of the First Family.

“I have warned kung sinumang tao yun, I have your identity already. Evidence na lang kulang [I have warned whoever is that person. I have already the identity, we are just lacking evidence],” she said.

She said the complainant presented to them fake documents. Garma said she will ask law enforcement agencies to go after people behind such illegal gambling operations.

“Ako’y nananawagan sa PNP at NBI na hulihin ito dahil walang palaro ang PCSO na bingo or any gaming online [I am calling PNP and NBI to catch the illegal gamblers, because PCSO has no bingo or any gambling online],” Garma said.

Garma also urged the public to play only games authorized by the PCSO.

“Wag tangkilikin ang illegal na sugal para masigurado na pumapasok ang kita sa gobyerno [Don’t patronize illegal gambling to assure that revenues will go to the government],” she said.

The PCSO serves as the principal government agency for raising and providing funds for health programs, medical assistance, and services, and charities of national character.

Garma urged the public to keep on patronizing the products of PCSO as a large chunk of its revenue goes to charity programs. 

Topics: Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office , Universal Health Care , Malasakit Centers
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