A lawmaker has filed a bill banning funeral agents from doing business inside hospital premises.
Rep. Winston Castelo (2nd District, Quezon City), author of House Bill 2320, said there should be law imposing a penalty to funeral agents who are scouting for clients inside hospitals.
Castelo said funeral agents can be seen at the emergency rooms of the Justice Jose Abad Santos Mother and Child Hospital, Ospital ng Tondo, Ospital ng Maynila, Sta. Ana Hospital, Ospital ng Sampaloc and Gat Andres Bonifacio Memorial Medical Center as well as other government and private hospitals or medical centers in the country.
Castelo supported former Manila Mayor Alfredo Lim’s order prohibiting funeral agents from sneaking inside hospital premises especially when they are in search of an immediate family member of a dying patient and causing this prospective client to sign a contract.
“This is not just morally anachronistic. Hospitals are there to ensure that patients come out alive and well,” Castelo said.
“It is an insult to the role of hospitals and the medical practitioners when funeral agents can freely loiter in the premises of hospitals asking or looking for dying or terminally-ill patients in an intent to forge a contract with the immediate family member,” Castelo added.
The bill mandates the Department of Health (DOH) to prescribe appropriate penalties for violators.
The Secretary of Health shall institute rules and regulations to prevent funeral agents from initiating transactions inside the premises of hospitals where dying patients and their immediate family members may be found. PNA