Thursday, 6 January 2011

Arroyos file bill for OFW hospital

By TJ Burgonio
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines—They keep the economy afloat and so deserve a medical facility of their own.

Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and her son, Camarines Sur Representative Diosdado Arroyo, have proposed the establishment of a special hospital for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and their dependents.

With many of them sick or ailing when they return to Manila, overseas workers would best be served in a special hospital, they said.

“Many OFWs are in immediate need of medical attention or hospital confinement due to various physical or mental illnesses sustained abroad,” the Arroyos said in House Bill No. 1474.

They proposed to name the facility the Migrant Workers Hospital and leave its control and supervision to the Overseas Workers’ Welfare Administration (Owwa), the government agency overseeing overseas workers’ needs.

The Arroyos said the hospital would complement the package of health services provided by Owwa to OFWs and their dependents.

It would provide comprehensive health care services to workers who are Owwa contributors. Even would-be overseas workers who had secured approved job orders would be served by the hospital.

The facility “shall complement the existing package of services under the Health Care Program so as to include preventive, diagnostic, curative and rehabilitative programs.”

It will also have a system that will ensure the effective monitoring of patients’ conditions and collect relevant data crucial for the formulation of policies.

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