MANILA — The Department of Health has requested an additional funding of P27 billion for the health emergency allowance of medical frontliners.
In a press briefing Tuesday, DOH officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said the agency wrote the Department of Budget and Management on Nov. 8 seeking the additional funding.
"Just recently nag-request tayo ng P27 billion from DBM. We released the letter last November 8 para po mo-cover na natin 'yung remaining months of the year na hindi pa po nako-cover for our health emergency allowance (HEA)," she told reporters.
(Just recently, we requested P27 from the DBM. We released the letter last November 8 so we could cover the remaining months of the year health emergency allowance.)
Health workers are entitled to HEA under Republic Act 11712 or Public Health Emergency Benefits and Allowances for Health Care Workers Act, which was passed into law in April 2022.
The law provides for the following allowances for different risk exposure levels:
- Those deployed in "low risk areas" shall be given at least P3,000;
- Those deployed in "medium risk areas" shall be given at least P6,000; and
- Those deployed in "high risk areas" shall be given at least P9,000.
"So, antayin lamang po natin 'yung sagot ng DBM and of course, 'yung issuance para maibigay din po natin sa ating mga healthcare workers 'yung kanilang benefits sana bago mag-Pasko para masaya ang Pasko ng ating mga healthcare workers," Vergeire said.
(Let us just wait for the DBM's reply and of course, the issuance so we could give our healthcare workers their benefits hopefully before Christmas so that their holidays would be merry.)
The agency has so far released a total of P19.4 billion worth of COVID-19 benefits to health workers, she added.
In October, the DBM released an additional P1.04 billion for the special risk allowance (SRA) of some 55,000 eligible public and private health workers involved in COVID-19 response.
Qualified health workers include medical, allied medical, and other personnel assigned in hospitals and health care facilities, and who are directly catering to or in contact with COVID-19 patients, persons under investigation or persons under monitoring.
Courtesy of DOH