Pangilinan files bill to double gov’t doctors’ pay
Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan has filed a bill in the Senate that would double the minimum salary of government doctors to encourage them to work in public hospitals, instead of seeking employment overseas.
Pangilinan said Senate Bill 57 or the Government Doctors’ Salary Upgrading Act proposes to raise the minimum salary grade level of government doctors from Salary Grade 16 (P28,417 on first tranche) to Salary Grade 24 (P56,610 on first tranche).
“We understand the need of our doctors for higher compensation. It is unfortunate that many of them choose to work abroad rather than continue their medical profession here in our country where they are most needed),” he said in a statement on Friday.
“We hope that through our proposed measure of raising our government doctors’ salary grade, more doctors will be encouraged to work in public hospitals and won’t have to seek for greener pastures abroad anymore,” he added.
The senator noted that in 2013, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that around 22,000 health professionals leave the Philippines annually to work abroad.
“Also, according to the International Organization for Migration, the Philippines faces well in terms of the education and health components of human development index (HDI) but is less successful in the provision of decent income, a dimension that is inextricably linked to employment,” he said.
Pangilinan said his bill also aims to address the “brain drain” phenomenon that has been a perennial problem in the recent decades.
He also pointed out that of the 70 percent of Filipinos living in rural areas, only 10 percent benefit from the services of medical professionals.
“Our rural folk especially those living in remote communities must have greater access to health services. They are the ones who need the most help from our doctors,” said the senator.
Pangilinan said the Government Doctors’ Upgrading Bill is part of his priority legislative agenda for the 17th Congress. CDG/rga
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