Tuesday, 26 May 2020

Sarangani waives fees for medical certificate issuance

ALABEL, Sarangani (May 6, 2020) – The Sangguniang Panlalawigan passed on May 5 a resolution suspending the imposition of fees and charges with regards to the issuance of medical certificate in the six province-run hospitals in Sarangani.

It was immediately approved by Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon.

“The provincial officials agreed na i-waive ang fees sa issuance of health certificate, provided na musubay sa guidelines na giingon sa atong provincial health officer,” said Board Member Joseph Calanao, chairman of the committee on finance, budgeting and appropriations.

As part of the transition from the Enhanced Community Quarantine to General Community Quarantine, the provincial government has required those coming in and going home to Sarangani from other cities or municipalities outside the province to present a health or medical certificate.

“Now in GCQ, we need more enforcement and to be more strict kasi mas marami na ang nakakalabas na mga tao, compared to ECQ na nasa bahay lang sila,” Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon said.

According to Executive Order No. 12, a health certificate stating that the person is free from any COVID-related symptoms and has not been sick within the last 14 days must be secured from either the city, municipal or provincial health office of origin.

“The health certificate is the only way for us to ensure na wala pa tayong COVID in Sarangani, na lahat ng mga may respiratory tract infection malalaman kaagad natin, because that will be basically an active surveillance natin ng individuals with influenza-like illness, Provincial Health Officer Dr. Arvin Alejandro said.

The medical certificate can be issued by any “government physician, including the private physicians working in the province-run hospitals, company physicians, provincial and municipal health offices” and will be presented to checkpoints going to Sarangani.

Alejandro said the issuance of a medical certificate became a requirement, especially for the employees, due to the “100% re-opening of mga essential activities or establishments like agri, fisheries, so kailangan sigurado tayo na yung mga bumabalik sa trabaho ay walang mga signs and symptoms of COVID.”

“Ang pinaka-importante ngayon sa GCQ is we need to be more vigilant sa mga labas-pasok sa ating province, that is the reason why we wanted a medical certificate or health certificate to be presented by any individual. Kasi may mga empleyado that because of the closure of companies during ECQ ay nasa bahay lang sila. So we have to ensure that these individuals coming out from their respective houses are free of signs and symptoms of respiratory tract infection, which may be related to COVID,” Alejandro added.

Assistant Provincial Administrator Engr. Gerald Faciol said the matter on medical certificate has already been discussed with the business partners and managers, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Department of Labor and Employment, through a teleconference on May 4.

“There was also a discussion if we could perhaps extend our moratorium till Friday. But we will just issue guidelines pertaining to that, we’ll come up with guidelines paano nato sya matugunan,” he said.

“Meron din tayong inimpose na system with regards to that na meron din tayong checklist na kailangan na fill-upan ng ating health workers before i-refer sa physician for final signature ang mga health certificates,” Dr. Alejandro said.

Alejandro also clarified the directive applies to “everyone na papasok sa Sarangani. The health certificate is irrespective kung sino yang individual. We will never know that we are free of COVID if we have exemptions.”

With regards to the validity of the certificate, Alejandro said “that’s a one-time medical certificate. However, we are encouraging the companies for their employees to be assessed by their company doctors or nurses every 10 days, with the checklist that we are providing.”

“Still even if we are in the GCQ,” Alejandro encouraged “all those who have either fever, cough or sore throat, to stay at home. Try to call the telekonsulta numbers natin sa bawat hospitals natin and follow their advices and interventions if there are.”

Of the six province-run hospitals, Dr. Cornelio Martinez Sr. Memorial Hospital in Kiamba was the first to operate the Tele-Konsulta service. Residents living there may ask for assistance through mobile numbers 0917-700-0697 or 0920-9586-009, and landline number (083) 893-4142.

Maasim Municipal Hospital can be reached through 0906-453-6338 or 0961-314-5537 and landline number (083) 893-0062.

Maitum Municipal Hospital’s number is 0946-709-6618.

Residents may contact Glan Medicare Community Hospital through mobile numbers 0951-535-7273 and 0975-769-1711.

Malungon Municipal Hospital can be reached through 0951-814-8697 and 0935-642-1539.

The Capitol-based Sarangani Health Care Facility can be utilized by the residents living in Alabel and Malapatan towns and can be reached through the mobile numbers 0951-307-5985 and 0927-380-3633. (Jori Mae Samillano/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)

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