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Dapat level up! Helen Tan wants PH’s preparedness for public health emergency modernized

May 7, 2020 @ 11:56
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Quezon Rep. Helen Tan has filed a bill seeking to modernize the country’s preparedness to address public health emergencies.

House Bill 6633 proposes the creation of the Public Health Emergency Services Modernization Program which will undertake necessary reforms in the recruitment, training, employment and management of the country’s public health emergency personnel; acquisition and upgrading of appropriate technologies, laboratories, and equipment; and provision for the needed relocation, improvement, and construction of facilities to enhance the country’s preparedness and response to public health emergencies.

The bill also seeks to establish a Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDPC), which will serve as the principal agency mandated to develop and apply communicable disease prevention and control initiatives.

HB 6633 provides for the upgrading of the authorized bed capacity of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) to one hundred (100) beds where one-half of its bed capacity will be used as negative pressure isolation rooms. It also seeks to establish RITM branches in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

Tan, chair of the House committee on health, said the COVID-19 pandemic is a wake up call for the government to improve its healthcare capacity to address another outbreak.

“We cannot merely keep on rearranging the boxes within our health organization without capacitating our health personnel and resources. That will not work. We need to modernize and reorganize our health system to protect the public from health risks,” she said.

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