With the COVID-19 pandemic exposing the inaccessibility of healthcare in the country, the Coalition for People’s Right to Health, Council for Health and Development, Health Alliance for Democracy, and People’s Health Movement – Philippines held the forum Reclaiming Health and Well-Being: SDG 3 and privatization amid the pandemic on July 7, 2021.
The organizations uncovered how the Philippines neglects its public healthcare system through profit-oriented neoliberal policies of privatization which excludes the poor and marginalized sectors who are the most vulnerable in the current health crisis.
The groups assert that the public health system should be kept public by making it unified, comprehensive, progressive, and publicly-funded. Moreover, all moves to further the role of the private sector in government health system must be resisted as in the case of UK’s NHS — to ensure that health remains a right of every citizen.
Currently, the groups are pushing for House Bill 9515 or the Free National Public Health System Act. A bill in Philippine Congress that seeks to provide free, comprehensive, and progressive, national public health care.
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