Hindi na bubuwagin ang Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) sa ilalim ng panukalang paglikha ng Philippine Center for Disease Prevention and Control Act (CDC).
Sa sponsorship speech ni Senator Pia Cayetano para sa committee report No. 28 ng Senate Bill 1869, mananatiling "whole body" ang RITM sa ilalim ng CDC.
Paliwanag ni Cayetano, dahil sa napakaraming accomplishments ng RITM ay inilaban nila sa Senado na manatili itong buo at hindi na hahati-hatiin ang functions tulad ng naunang ipinapanukala.
“CDC, under the Department of Health’s Office of the Secretary, will act as the technical authority on forecasting, analysis, strategy, and standards development for the prevention and control of all diseases of public health importance and health security events, whether domestic or international in origin,” paliwanag pa ni Cayetano.
Nakapaloob din sa committee report ang pagpapalit ng pangalan ng RITM sa Philippine Research Institute of Medicine (PIRM).
Mananatili ang kasalukuyang tungkulin ng RITM sa clinical research division, laboratory research division at biological research division at palalawakin pa ang functions sa pag-aaral ng mga infectious at non-infectious diseases partikular sa health evidence at health laboratories.
Samantala, ang CDC naman na mapapasailalim ng Department of Health (DOH) ang siyang magiging technical authority na mangunguna sa forecasting, analysis, strategy at standards development para sa prevention at control ng lahat ng mga karamdaman at uusbong pang mga sakit sa bansa.
Ayon kay Cayetano, dahil sa naranasang pandemya ay nakita ng Kongreso ang kahalagahan ng pagkakaroon ng CDC lalo pa't sa ilalim ng COVID-19 pandemic ay nalantad ang malaking agwat at kakulangan sa health care system ng bansa.
Dagdag pa ni Cayetano, “Through this measure, we aim to adopt a framework that fosters a whole-of-system, whole-of-government, and whole-of-society approach that would streamline science-based decision-making and policy-making, especially during public health emergencies. The functions of RITM and the other centers were also harmonized with the existing offices and units within the DOH.”
Sabi naman ni Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva, mahalaga na maipasa agad ang panukala.
“Our people have suffered enough. We have seen the necessity of strengthening our healthcare system to ensure that massive loss of lives and jobs will no longer happen should we experience another health emergency of this scale. We need to be prepared as a new study which appeared in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America found that the probability of a pandemic with a similar impact to COVID-19 is about 2% in any year and the probability of experiencing a pandemic similar to COVID-19 in one’s lifetime is about 38.4 percent,” giit ni Villanueva.
Si Senate President pro tempore Loren Legarda sinabi naman na hindi na dapat maghintay pa ng panibagong pandemya bago kumilos at palakasin ang mahinang health care system ng bansa.
Dagdag niya, “The right to health of every Filipino must be protected by the government. Everyone should have access to health services. The proposed policy will address not only the issues that COVID-19 has brought to our healthcare system but also ensure that our healthcare system is equipped to monitor, forecast, and develop precautions to control diseases of either national or international concern.”
Hiniling naman ni Senate Committee on Health and Demography chairman Senator Bong Go ang suporta ng mga kapwa senador sa panukala.
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Disease, pandemic, Center for Disease Prevention, RITM, Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, Senate, Philippine Center for Disease Prevention and Control Act, CDC, Philippine Research Institute of Medicine, PIRM, Tagalog news