January 31, 2023

Juan Kabayan

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Bong Go extends support to families of OFWs

SEN. Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go’s outreach team provided relief to overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and their families in Digos City, Davao del Sur on Sunday, December 18. This was part of the senator’s efforts to assist those whose lives and livelihoods have been adversely affected by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

As he continues to prioritize the welfare of migrant workers, Go reiterated the importance of strengthening reintegration programs for returning OFWs, such as livelihood support, wellness and financial literacy programs, and other similar projects, pursuant to the Department of Migrant Workers Act.

The Senate version of the Act, Senate Bill 2234, was authored and co-sponsored by Go in a bid to improve coordination among agencies dealing with Filipino migrant workers and ensure the effective delivery of critical public services to OFWs.

“Our OFWs are really a big help to their families and the country. They’re working hard and making sacrifices for their families and the country,” Go said.

In his video message to the beneficiaries, Go asked them to remain supportive of the government as it continues to strengthen its efforts to ensure that more Filipinos are protected from the virus and to help the country return to normalcy soon.

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As chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, the senator likewise urged those eligible to get vaccinated and boosted immediately.

“My countrymen, let’s help one another. Rest assured that the government is doing everything to ensure that we will overcome this crisis,” Go said.

“Now that the vaccination is still ongoing, your cooperation and discipline are needed. Let us follow the health protocols. Our economy is slowly recovering and let us support it.”

Go’s team mounted the relief activity at Dawis Beach where 300 OFW families were assisted. The team distributed masks and shirts to each beneficiary and also gave away shoes, cellular phones, umbrellas, basketballs and volleyballs to select individuals.

A team from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) also provided financial assistance through its Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation program.

Go then offered additional assistance to those with medical concerns and advised them to seek the services of the Malasakit Centers located at Davao del Sur Provincial Hospital in Digos City or Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao City.

Signed into law in 2019, the Malasakit Centers Act, which Go principally authored and sponsored, mandates the establishment of centers in every Department of Health (DoH)-run hospitals nationwide and in the Philippine General Hospital in Manila, where poor patients can access medical assistance programs by the government.

“We already have 153 Malasakit Centers nationwide that are ready to help you. The Malasakit Center is a one-stop shop. The four agencies of the government — PhilHealth, PCSO, DoH, DSWD — are inside the hospital to help you with your hospital expenses,” Go explained.

To further improve the province’s health care system, Go also supported the establishment of Super Health Centers in Digos City and Matanao.

Super Health Centers will offer basic health services, including database management, outpatient, birthing, isolation, isolation, diagnostic (laboratory: X-ray, ultrasound), pharmacy, and ambulatory surgical unit.

Other available services are eye, ear, nose and throat service, oncology centers, physical therapy and rehabilitation center, and telemedicine, where remote diagnosis and treatment of patients will be done.

To help create more economic opportunities in the province, Go, as vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance, likewise supported the construction of multipurpose buildings in Digos City, Bansalan, Hagonoy, Magsaysay, Malalag, Padada, and Sulop; and the development of a bat cave in Matanao.