Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson’s health agenda just got a big boost when former Health Secretary Esperanza Cabral, former Food and Drug Administration Director General Dr. Kenneth Hartigan-Go and Eye Bank Foundation president Dr. Minguita Padilla formally presented their proposed national health agenda to the presidential candidate.
The agenda was delivered on the first week of October to Lacson’s policy team upon their request, to which Lacson has formally accepted.
The proposal, entitled “Health Agenda 2022 and Beyond,” is the product of Cabral, Hartigan-Go, and Padilla’s collective experience in the health sector and in government.
It was prepared as a guide for all interested presidential candidates in health care policy.
Padilla, who is also a senatorial candidate of Partido Reporma chaired by Lacson, said that the group’s philosophy is that health should be beyond politics.
The three proponents also hope that the next president will have sound health policies.
The group has since been joined by other former and current health officials and members of the academe.
Lacson and his team have assured the three that they will closely study the health agenda as a guide for their health policies and programs.
These include action plans that will address the country’s COVID-19 response and long-term plans to improve healthcare in the Philippines beginning 2022 and beyond.
Earlier, Lacson said May 2022 general elections should not be about personalities but about finding solutions to the enormous problems facing the country.
Lacson said this would require competence, experience, and integrity in public service.
“The elections in 2022 is more about knowing the enormous problems and offering solutions. It is more about competence, experience, and loyalty in public service,” he said at his and Senate President Vicente C. Sotto III’s “Online Kumustahan.”
He reiterated the people should not look at personalities or “gimmicks,” but instead at the seriousness of the problems, especially amid the pandemic.
Lacson, who is running under Partido Reporma, also reiterated that while the problems facing the country--including a huge debt, corruption, the effects of the COVID-19, and sovereignty in the West Philippine Sea--are due to bad government.
He said it is important to restore trust in the government, something he intends to do through policies, including disciplining the bureaucracy through leadership by example.
He also said the solutions to the problems must be based on data, science and research, even as the government must work more closely with the private sector and local government units instead of engaging in overregulation.