Cayetano urges national government to create a long-term plan for the country’s healthcare system

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Former Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano on Wednesday urged the national government to create a five- or ten-year plan for the country’s healthcare system to ensure quality facilities and services, especially during a pandemic.

“Kung makikita mo, whether in modern days in China or noong araw sa Japan at saka sa Europe, pagkatapos ng giyera, may five-year o ten-year plan. May Marshall Plan,” Cayetano said in an interview with a local radio station in General Santos City on May 19.

(Observe that, whether in the modern days of China or in the traditional days of Japan or Europe, whenever a war ended, they have a five-year or ten-year plan. They have a partial plan.)

The Marshall Plan was an American initiative passed in 1948 in which the US transferred over $13 billion in economic recovery programs to Western European economies to help them recover after the end of World War II.

Cayetano said creating a long-term plan for the healthcare system would foster accountability among officials and agencies.

“‘Pag may plano, may accountability (If there is a plan, there is accountability),” he said.

Cayetano said the government can undertake the construction of more barangay health centers and the provision of scholarships to aspiring doctors who may enter into a return service agreement with the government to ensure their recruitment.

“Siguro mag-ten-year program tayo [para] ‘yung kulang ng Pilipinas na 60,000 doctors, [pwedeng] i-scholar sila nang buong buo, pero ang usapan, i-aassign sila sa buong bansa ng ilang taon,” he said.

(We can create a 10-year program so that the 60,000 doctors we need in the country may be provided with scholarships, but under the agreement that they will be assigned to different parts of the country for a certain number of years.)

“‘Pag nagawa po natin ‘yan, magbabago talaga. Magkakaroon ng tunay na transformation sa ating bansa,” he added.

(Once we do that, we would be able to create change and see true transformation in our country.)

Cayetano also highlighted Taguig’s major healthcare initiatives, including the establishment of 31 PhilHealth-accredited health centers and three round-the-clock super health centers with their own laboratories and on-call doctors.

“Nung nagka-COVID, madali kaming nakapag-adjust, kasi kumpleto kami sa gamit [at] kumpleto kami sa mga doktor,” he said.

(When COVID-19 happened, we were able to adjust easily because we had complete facilities and doctors.)###

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