September 29, 2023

The Lower House has approved the bill seeking for the renationalization of the Benguet General Hospital and increasing its bed capacity from 200 to 400.

Benguet legislative caretaker Rep. Eric Go Yap of ACT-CIS party-list, reported last week that his colleagues in Congress has passed House Bill 6849 which seeks to return the management of BeGH from the provincial governmentback to the Department of Health.

The bill will be tacked in the Senate soon.

In his meeting with the 13 mayors of Benguet on June 4, Yap said his office would see to it that the bill would hurdle the Senate and will be signed into law.

“I am confident that this year we will be able to have the President sign the bill,” Yap told the mayors.

If the bill is approved into law, DOH will be mandated to provide more funds for the hospital for increasing its bed capacity as well as increasing the salary of personnel and other health workers.

Yap projected that by 2022, BeGH would then be allocated funds for the building of additional infrastructure in its compound. 

The solon added he plans to conduct Covid-19 mass testing for Benguet with the PCR and automated extraction machines he earlier donated to the BeGH.

Through a memorandum of agreement, the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center is using the machines pending the construction of a real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing center in the province where the machines will be set up.

In the MOA, BeGH is given a minimum of 100 slots per day for its Covid-19 testing at the BGHMC, the latter having the trained personnel as well as laboratory to conduct Covid-19 testing in the region.

Yap said he coordinated with the BeGH to prepare the documents needed in establishing an RT-PCR testing center for the hospital. He said they are targeting to put up the center by September this year.

Yap said he would personally fund the construction of the testing center worth P1.8 million.

He said he will coordinate with the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine for the training of nurses and medical technologists.

BeGH Chief Dr. Meliarazon Dulay said they are currently waiting for the DOH’s approval for the permit to construct and to conduct site inspection next week. – Ofelia C. Empian