Starting August 1, five more public hospitals in Metro Manila will implement the Libreng Gamot Para sa Masa Program (Lingap) after signing a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).
Lingap is a project of President Rodrigo Duterte that provides P1-billion to fund medicine assistance for indigent patients who need help to buy their medication.
These new partner hospitals are government hospitals Jose Reyes Memorial Hospital, East Avenue Medical Center, Lung Center of the Philippines, Philippine Children’s Hospital, and San Lazaro Hospital.
With the new partnership, DSWD now has a total of 11 partner-public hospitals which will facilitate the provision of free medicine to indigent patients.
At the start of the program implementation last March, DSWD only had six partner hospitals in five regions. These are Philippine General Hospital for NCR; Jose B. Lingad Memorial Hospital in San Fernando City, Pampanga for Central Luzon; Western Visayas Medical Center in Iloilo City for Western Visayas; Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center in Cebu City for Central Visayas; and Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao City and Davao Regional Hospital in Tagum City, both for the Davao Region.
DSWD Secretary Judy M. Taguiwalo said, “Simula Agosto 1, may dagdag na tulong nang makukuha ang mga nangangailangang indigent na pasyente sa Metro Manila. Mahalaga itong binuo nating kaisahan kasama ang limang malalaking pampublikong hospital na maging katuwang natin sa pagpapatupad ng LingaP. Alam naman nating madaming mahihirap tayong mga kababayan ang pumupunta sa mga nasabing hospital at malaking tulong sa kanila ang makakuha ng libreng gamot. Ngayon, siguradong mas marami na tayong mabibigyang mga pasyente (Starting August 1, indigent patients in Metro Manila will have better access to the free medicine program as a result of the partnership with the five major public hospitals. We know quite well that many poor patients go to the five hospitals for their medical needs and free access to medicines is a big help to them).”
As of July 7, 2017, Lingap has already served 13,142 indigent patients in five regions, with the assistance amounting to P96,659,339.76.
Of the participating hospitals, the Jose B. Lingad Memorial Hospital in San Fernando City, Pampanga registered the highest utilization to date with P33,699,966.20 worth of medicines accessed by 3,242 patients.
On the other hand, some 3,593 patients in Region VI benefited from the free medicine program utilizing P16,189,175.53 of the P1B fund.
In Davao, 3,296 indigents were served in the two participating hospitals disbursing some P19,141,407.55
Through the UP-PGH, Lingap reached out to 1,614 indigent patients, utilizing P11,962,603 while in Region VII, some P15,666,187.48 was spent for the medicines of 1,397 beneficiaries.
The indigent patients, in-patient or out-patient alike, who may avail are the following: 1] Families or individuals who are indigent, vulnerable or disadvantaged; 2] Those in the informal sector and poor based on DSWD Listahanan; 3] Those who are in crisis situation based on assessment of social workers; 4] Employees and contract of service workers of government in crisis situation; and 5] Dependents of soldiers and police officers killed or wounded in line of duty.
Those who want to benefit from the program must bring: 1] Any valid ID of the patient; 2] Any valid ID of representative and written authorization signed by the patient in favor of the representative; 3] Doctor’s prescription issued within the last three months, indicating date and name of patient, duly signed by attending physician, with his or her license number and contact details; 4] Proof of Indigency or Certificate issued by the barangay or medical social service of an identified hospital. They may also approach medical social workers assigned in the participating hospitals.
With the inclusion of the additional partner hospitals, the DSWD expects an increase in the number of clients served in Metro Manila starting August. However, the Department still enjoins qualified individuals, especially those in the abovementioned regions to avail of the program.#