- Health workers said people can no longer afford to go to hospitals with the proposed 2017 health budget
- The Alliance of Health Workers said it is very clear that the government is not prioritizing health
- The budget will only force the hospitals to charge higher fee, the AHW stated
With the proposed Department of Health (DOH) budget for 2017, the people can no longer afford to go to hospitals, a group composed of health workers said on Tuesday.
“With the proposed 2017 health budget, the people will no longer afford to go to hospitals,” the Alliance of Health Workers noted.
“The Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE) was cut down by P36.4 billion and this translates to decreased subsidy for the laboratory, diagnostic procedures, medicines and other services offered by the public hospitals. Also, the Capital Outlay (CO) allocation is almost zero. On the other hand, Personnel Services budget increased due to salary adjustments but it was not enough to provide decent wages for the health workers,” it added.
The group said the Duterte administration’s slogan “Change is coming” does not reflect on this matter.
“He promised to be better than past administrations that merely gave lip service to people’s health and will make health a priority with quality services more accessible especially for the poor. According to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) at least P315 B is needed so that the people will not have to pay much for their health,” the AHW said.
The proposed DOH budget, on the other hand, is just P143 billion; only a little higher than the P123.9 billion budget for 2016.
“It is very clear that the government is not prioritizing health. This kind of budget will only force the hospitals to charge higher fees and will no longer sustain the health needs of the people. In order to give better services to the people, the public hospitals need higher MOOE budget,” the group noted.