PRRD NAIS MADALIIN ANG PAGPASA NG MGA PANUKALANG BATAS PARA SA COVID-19 VACCINE INDEMNITY FUND

Ni Raiza F. Cabugwang
President Rodrigo Duterte, Photo courtesy of pna.gov.ph
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Nais mapabilis ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte ang pagpasa ng mga panukalang batas na magtitiyak na mayroong pondong nakalaan para mabigyan ng kompensasyon ang mga Pilipinong makararanas ng malubhang side effects o masasawi matapos silang mabakunahan laban sa COVID-19. 

Sa press briefing na ginanap noong Huwebes, Pebrero 18, 2021, inanunsyo ni Vaccine Czar Garlito Galvez, Jr. na sinertipikahan na ng Pangulo ang Senate Bill 2057 at House Bill 8648, na parehong naglalayong magkaroon ang bansa ng indemnity fund at mapabilis ang pagkuha ng suplay ng naturang bakuna. 

“Magandang balita po, pinirmahan na po ng ating mahal na Pangulo ang pagsertipika ng panukalang batas as urgent. Magandang balita po, pinirmahan na niya as urgent iyong mga Senate [and House] Bill na makikita nating makakatulong sa atin,” pahayag ni Galvez. 

Sa ilalim ng Senate Bill 2057 o COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act of 2021, na iprinesenta ni Senador Sonny Angara, pag-iisahin ang lahat ng mga panukalang batas na may kinalaman sa COVID-19 vaccines na dati nang ipinasa ng ibang mga mambabatas. 

Partikular na layunin ng nasabing panukalang batas na magkaroon ng P500 milyong COVID-19 National Indemnity Fund, na kukunin naman mula sa contingent fund ng national budget. Naatasang mamahala nito ang Philippine Health Insurance Corporation o PhilHealth. 

Samantala, hangad naman ng House Bill 8648 o Emergency Vaccine Procurement Act of 2021 na mapabilis ang pagbili ng nasabing mga bakuna upang masigurong lahat ng mga Pilipino, partikular na ang mga matatanda at iyong mga kabilang sa marginalized sector ng lipunan, ay mababakunahan at mapoprotektahan laban sa virus. 

Ikinatuwa naman ng pangunahing may-akda ng House Bill 8648 na si House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco ang naturang hakbang ng Pangulo. 

“The President’s certification of the bill as urgent will also help our LGUs [local government units] transition to some kind of normalcy as we aim to further open the economy to help the business sector reopen and re-employ those who have been displaced by the pandemic,” pahayag ni Velasco.

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