June 25, 2024

The Insider News

Direct from the source

Bong Go warns public vs fake loan aid posts; condemns misuse of Malasakit Centers’ name

SENATOR Christopher “Bong” Go has called for public vigilance in response to the Department of Health’s (DOH) warning against fraudulent social media pages misusing the Malasakit Centers’ logo to promote bogus loan assistance.

The DOH recently cautioned the public against certain Facebook pages illicitly leveraging the name and logo of the Malasakit Program Office, suggesting they were online outlets for the centers.

However, these platforms are not associated with the legitimate Malasakit Centers, known for their role as one-stop shops within government hospitals, delivering medical and financial assistance to those in need.

Go, the proponent of the Malasakit Centers program, emphasized their role in returning public funds to Filipinos through dependable medical services, primarily benefiting the underprivileged.

“Our goal with Malasakit Centers has always been clear: to ensure that every Filipino, regardless of their financial status, can access medical assistance from the government for their healthcare needs,” said Go.

“Walang kapalit ang tulong mula sa Malasakit Centers. Pera ng taumbayan yan, binabalik lang sa kanila sa pamamagitan ng mabilis, maayos at maaasahang serbisyo o tulong pampagamot,” he added.

Malasakit Centers bring together representatives from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), DOH, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), and the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO). These one-stop shops aim to support impoverished patients in reducing their hospital costs to the least possible amount.

“One stop shop ito para hindi na mahirapan o magpalaboy-laboy ang mga humihingi ng tulong pampagamot. Hindi na kailangan bumyahe o umikot pa sa iba’t ibang opisina ng gobyerno dahil nasa iisang kwarto na sa loob mismo ng ilang pampublikong ospital ang mga ahensya na may medical assistance programs na maaaring makapagbigay ng tulong sa mga poor and indigent patients,” he explained.

Go is the principal author and sponsor of Republic Act No. 11463, or the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019, which institutionalized the Malasakit Centers program.

Currently, 159 Malasakit Centers are operational nationwide, poised to assist with patients’ medical expenses. The DOH reports that the Malasakit Center program has already provided aid to around ten million Filipinos.

Go also warned against the deceitful use of the Malasakit Center’s name, underscoring that these counterfeit platforms undermine the trust and efficiency established by the legitimate centers. He supported DOH’s stance on legal action against the individuals responsible for these fraudulent activities.

“We will not tolerate any actions that exploit the good intentions of Malasakit Centers. The legal measures being considered are necessary to protect our citizens and ensure the continued integrity of these centers,” Go added.

The DOH is considering pressing criminal charges against the creators of the fraudulent social media pages to safeguard the public interest and maintain the integrity of the Malasakit Program.