DOH requesting additional P92 billion for 2022 budget
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) is requesting an additional budget of P92.8 billion for 2022, mostly for programs related to the COVID-19 response and the Universal Health Care (UHC) law.
“The DOH is appealing for additional P92.8 billion for 17 PAPs (projects, activities, and projects) under DOH-OSEC (Office of the Secretary) and P260 million for the National Nutrition Council,” Duque said during a Senate hearing on the proposed budget of the health agency on Wednesday.
“The total budget requirement needed by the DOH-OSEC will now amount to P254.3 billion and this corresponds to the current NEP (National Expenditure Program) level plus these budget appeals,” he added.
Duque said the budget appeals were submitted to both houses of Congress.
Based on the presentation of Duque, P77.46 billion will be allotted for programs related to COVID-19 initiatives and the UHC law. Meanwhile, P15.33 billion will be allotted for the implementation of other health-related laws.
According to Duque, the top priority budget appeals are for the following items for COVID-19 response: P51.3 billion for benefits and compensation of health workers; P11.8 billion to “close the remaining nine-month gap” of laboratory testing commodities; P2.5 billion for the hiring of vaccinators; P430 million for the renewal of existing personnel for COVID surveillance units, vaccine side effects units, and upgrading of information systems like COVIDKaya and FASSSTER; and P667 million for whole-genome sequencing.
“The department would truly appreciate if the committee will also review and consider appeals for additional budget of other line items such as additional budgetary allocation of P3.3 billion to maintain the current number of deployed nurses,” Duque told senators.
“This is to accommodate the salary adjustment for nurses from SG (salary grade) 15 to SG 16 in accordance with DBM circular 2021-02 dated August 25 of 2021,” he added.
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