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ANAKALUSUGAN Party-list proposes Magna Carta of BHWs
“While we continue to advocate to ensure just compensation and enough protection for our healthcare professionals, our Barangay Health Workers, who provides accessible and medical assistance in the grassroots, are being left behind.”
ANAKALUSUGAN Party-list Representative Ray Florence Reyes said this in a statement as he expressed optimism that the Lower House will support the measure that guarantees government support for community health workers in House Bill No. 1829 or the “Magna Carta of Barangay Health Workers” which also increases the benefits and pay of BHWs in the country.
He highlighted the importance of standardizing the honoraria pay of BHW to Salary Grade 8 from the current Salary Grade 1, as well as their entitlement to a hazard allowance of not less than PhP1,000 per month, and a one-time retirement cash incentive of not less than PhP 10,000 for those who have served for at least 15 years.
The bill also includes privileges for BHWs such as 20% discount on certain goods and services, subsistence allowance, transportation allowance, insurance coverage by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), and entitlements to sick, vacation, and maternity leaves. The appropriations with which will be taken from the National Tax Allotment (NTA) of the Local Government Units (LGU).
“Beside caring for the health of the communities they serve, it is inevitable that our BHWs may forget about their own health or get injured in the line of service. For that, it is just proper that they are also compensated and properly cared for by us legislators through laws that cover these,” Rep. Reyes stated.
BHWs who have rendered three years of continuous service will also be entitled to First Grade Civil Service eligibility, along with access to trainings and career enrichment opportunities from the Department of Health (DOH), Department of Education (DepEd), Commission of Higher Education (CHED), and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).
The proposal also provides for the appointment of at least one BHW in every barangay for every 20 households to ensure that there will be not less than one percent of healthcare worker for the total population. As of now, there are 234, 684 total number of BHWs nationwide.