Senator Win Gatchalian said that the signing of the Regional Specialty Centers Act (Republic Act No. 11959) is one step closer to making specialized health services more accessible to Filipinos.
The new law provides that at least one specialty center shall be established in Department of Health (DOH) hospitals in every region of the country within five years. Specialty centers refer to units or departments in hospitals that offer specialized care in addressing particular conditions. These centers also provide specific procedures and management of cases requiring specialized training on a specific specialty.
The law, which Gatchalian co-authored, shall prioritize cancer care, cardiovascular care, lung care, renal care and kidney transplant, brain and spine care, and mental health, among others.
“Sa pamamagitan ng Regional Specialty Centers Act, unti-unti nating mailalapit sa mas marami nating mga kababayan ang specialized healthcare services. Kung mapapatayuan natin ang bawat rehiyon ng specialty center, hindi na kakailanganin pang bumiyahe ng ating mga kababayan mula sa mga probinsya papuntang Metro Manila para lang makatanggap ng dekalidad na serbisyong pang-kalusugan,” said Gatchalian.
Under the law, the DOH shall ensure that specialty centers have expert personnel and medical specialists provided with necessary training and appropriate specialist equipment.
The law further mandates the DOH to include the establishment of specialty centers in the Philippine Health Facility Development Plan (PHFDP), which guides the investments funded by the national government in rationalizing the distribution of capacity and capability of health facilities.
Gatchalian, meanwhile, thanked Senator Christopher “Bong” Go who sponsored the measure in the Senate.