January 30, 2023

The city council has proposed amendments to Ordinance 69, s. 2018 to add more health services for women with disability.

Ordinance 69-2018 provides for comprehensive health services and comprehensive information and education exclusively for women with disability as part of the celebration of Women with Disabilities Day every last Monday of March.

Under the proposed amendment, women with certain disability will be provided with assistive devices such as, but not limited to, canes, wheelchairs, walkers, walking sticks, and hearing aids as part of the therapeutic and medical interventions.

These health services for women with disability are meant to be “culture-sensitive” and “gender-responsive” covering all stages of a woman’s life cycle and addressing the major causes of women’s mortality and morbidity.

Ordinance 69-2018 specifies that the city government shall provide women in all sectors with appropriate, timely, complete, and accurate information and education on all the aspects of women’s health in government education and training programs.

Under the proposed amendment, the following guidelines shall be included when providing health services to women with disabilities:

There shall be an appropriate referral by the medical officer/s-in-charge of patients to a psychiatrist, to an OB-Gyne, to the Violence against Women and Children offices, to fertility clinics, to an opthalmogist, to a surgeon, among others, whenever these health services are not available in the City Health Services Office (CHSO);

The woman with disability (children or adults) should be attended in health clinics, or in the CHSO, or in hospitals. They should present a certification from her doctor stating the nature of her disability and the findings explaining her disability, if any; and

The woman with disability (children or adults) should present a disability card issued by the Persons with Disability Affairs Office (PDAO) in order for her to avail of the discounts on consultations from health clinics, medical hospitals, or the CHSO.

The City Social Welfare and Development Office, the PDAO, and the CHSO shall craft guidelines on their particular roles and responsibilities in providing extensive medical services to women with disability.

The proposed amendatory ordinance was referred to the committee on health and sanitation, ecology, and environmental protection. – Jordan G. Habbiling