City officials have stepped up programs for the elderly in Valenzuela City by sustaining further its projects designed to address their health and well being needs.
At the “Natatanging mga Handog kay Lolo at Lola,” a special one-day program dedicated to senior citizens held at the City Social Hall recently, City Health Officer Dr. Jaime Exconde said the City Government has initially earmarked PhP 7 million for medicine supplies of some 2,000 indigent elderly for this year.
City Mayor Sherwin T. Gatchalian distributed to the first batch of beneficiaries their passbooks which will entitle them to receive free medicines at their respective Barangay Health Centers twice a month.
“The medicines they will get will be based on the prescription given by our city doctors,” Dr. Exconde said. Records show that most of the medicines were for diabetes, hypertension and athritis.
City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) Officer-in-Charge Dorothy G. Evangelista, on the other hand, explained that her office screened the beneficiaries based on their economic status to give priority to the poorest of the poor.
A senior citizen card holder of at least 60 years old who wish to avail of the program should present indigency and medical certificates, prescriptions and two pieces of 1x1 ID photos to the CSWDO for processing.
“Gaya po ng Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps, wala po itong bayad. (Like the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps, we don’t ask for processing fees here.),” Evangelista pointed out.
One of the recipients, Julian Mara, 62, from Sitio Kabatuhan, Barangay Gen. T. De Leon, is in medication maintenance for two years due to heart stroke. His illness has already affected his facility to talk. His common law wife expressed happiness for Mr. Mara because of the benefits he is receiving.
In a statement, Mayor WIN said that the City targets to provide passbooks to 10,000 indigent senior citizens by the end of the year.
Furthermore, the “Dalaw ni Dok kay Lolo at Lola,” a pioneering medical home visitation program has been expanded to cater other health needs of indigent senior citizen card holders who are unable to come to the hospital or health centers due to the nature of their illness. Most of the clients of the program are bed-ridden.
Patients can now receive free physical therapy sessions and dental check ups through this program, in addition to the regular visits of a doctor specializing in geriatric care.
The program started in August of last year with a client base of only 82. In the June 2011 report of City Health Department, the roving doctors have already logged 793 home visits to 219 patients in 32 barangays.
Physical therapy services, on the other hand, have done 321 free sessions to 133 patients at the comfort of the patient’s home, while dental services have served 14 patients.
The Office of Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA), headed by former Councilor Pablo Marcelo, is in close coordination with 1,624 senior citizen card holders in the City to make these projects achieve wider reach.
City records show, Valenzuela has around 70,000 residents aged 60 years and up.
- Mark Lester S. Cayabyab (06-23-2011)