Former President Gloria Arroyo, a deputy speaker at the House of Representatives, has filed a bill that seeks to establish a hospital for the country’s teachers and their dependents.
House Bill 2967 proposes the creation of the Philippine Teachers Hospital and allots an initial budget of P300 million for the facility.
“This hospital is in recognition of their [teachers’] invaluable contribution to educating the youth. In spite of the difficulties that confront their profession, they have remained steadfast in molding the values and character of our children. They are our unsung heroes,” Arroyo said in a statement.
“As such, teachers should be provided with facilities that will cater to their health needs,” she added.
The former President noted that teachers are exposed to work-related health risks like pharyngitis, hypertension, anemia and hyperacidity, among others.
Arroyo’s bill also provides that the Philippine Teachers Hospital, to be constructed in Metro Manila, will be the primary medical facility for the hospitalization and medical care of teachers and members of their family.
Teachers outside Metro Manila can go to regional hospitals because the measure mandates all regional hospitals to establish a teachers’ ward with an initial capacity of at least 50 beds.
Those employed by public and private educational institutions as teachers, instructors, administrative support employees, physicians, dentists and nurses as well as officials of the Department of Education (DepEd) and Commission on Higher Education (CHED), graduates of education who have passed the government examination for teachers but are not actually employed as such, are also covered by the bill.
The bill will cover teachers’ dependents such as their legitimate spouse, legitimate, illegitimate, or legally adopted children not older than 21, or children who are not married, not gainfully employed or incapacitated and incapable of self-support due to a mental or physical defect, and their parents dependent upon them for support.
The Philippine Teachers’ Hospital will be administered by a Board of Directors to be headed by the Secretaries of Education and Health as ex-officio chairmen. The secretary of the Department of Social Welfare and Development and chairman of the Commission on Higher Education will be the ex-officio members.
Other members of the board will be representatives from the teachers sector from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao who will serve a term of three years without reappointment.
“It is the hope of the author that such hospital can provide comprehensive health care services to all teachers and their dependents and complement the existing package of services under the National Health Insurance Program,” Arroyo said.