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LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Benguet Caretaker Congressman and Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS) Party-list Rep. Eric Yap filed a bill in the House of Representatives establishing the College of Medicine at the State-run Benguet State University (BSU) to entice the youth to enroll the said course to help in ensuring the availability of health professionals during the prevalence of future health crisis similar to the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
House Bill (HB) 10559 authored by Congressman Yap aims to make affordable the medicine course to aspiring residents not only of Benguet but also from the different parts of the Cordillera and Northern Luzon who want to be health professionals in the future.
‘Many or our kailyans in the province aspire to be doctors to be of help in their communities as they have experienced first-hand the difficulties of not having a doctor with the reach of their own barangays. They want to be part of the solution Btu aside from the high cost of medical education itself, the accessibility of a medical school remains to an obstacle for some who wish to pursue the medicine course,” Yap stressed.
At present, he disclosed that there are only 2 medical schools in the Cordillera which are purely private higher education institutions, thus, the filing of the aforesaid bill to provide a greater opportunity for the youth from Benguet to acquire quality medical education and training with the close proximity of the said learning institutions from their respective hometowns thereby reducing their extra cost on transportation and from their place and accommodation within the school.
The Benguet caretaker congressman pointed out that with the rapidly changing health care settings and the increasing need for doctors, the passage of the proposed measure into law will definitely help in enticing the youth to take up the said course to be able to help in the delivery of quality health care services to the countryside.
According to him, the proposed bill is in congruent with the Doctor Para Sa Bayan Act or Republic Act (RA) 11509 which he also authored as the same provides for the establishment of medical scholarship and return service program for deserving students in state universities and colleges (SUCs) offering the medical course.
Congressman Yap underscored that with the implementation of the medical scholarship and return service program and the establishment of the College of Medicine at the BSU, Benguet will be able to produce its own modern version of rural doctors who will be able to excel in their chosen field of profession.
Further, the timely passage of the bill into law will help in addressing the shortage of medical doctors in the country, especially in remote areas like Benguet.
Yap emphasized the importance of the youth taking up the medical course so that they will be able to become responsible health professionals in the future and render quality health care services to the people in the far flung communities that are deprived of their access to health care due to the lack of infrastructure and health care workers.
HB 10559 was referred to the House committee on health for appropriate action to ensure its passage the soonest for the benefit of the upliftment of the health care sector. By HENT