MANILA — Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Dr. Paulyn Ubial recently held a dialogue with patients’ groups and civil society organizations (CSOs) based in Mindanao in an effort to strengthen their line of communication.
“The 4th Policy Dialogue on Universal Health Care and Access to Medicines in Davao City is part of the continuing efforts of the Department of Health to listen to the concerns of patients, as well as to create and strengthen enabling partnerships with patient groups and civil society toward increasing access to health care services and medicines,” the department said in a statement.
“This mechanism serves as the platform for patients’ views on DOH policies and programs, particularly on improving access to medicines, (so they would) be heard by policy makers.”
The “Secretary’s Hour”, the highlight of the event, enabled the patients to speak directly with Ubial regarding their health concerns and suggest ways to help the government better address their needs.
The dialogue likewise enabled the DOH to inform the patients about its programs, especially the Medicines Access Programs that aim to reach those who are in need of health care services but are unable to access them due to various reasons, such as poverty, the department stated.
According to the DOH, it would also enlighten patients on President Rodrigo Duterte’s directives on reducing the prices of medicines, increasing their availability, and promoting the use of generic drugs in the country.
The Policy Dialogue on Universal Health Care and Access to Medicines, held quarterly by the DOH, recognizes that patients are key partners of the government in fulfilling the Philippine Health Agenda to achieve Universal Health Coverage, the DOH stated. (DOH PR)