The President signs an executive order to intensify access to modern family planning. This is despite the TRO on some provisions of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act or RPRH Law. Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia confirms this. Meanwhile, government health officials also hope that the programs under the eHealth system or telemedicine can already progress at the soonest possible time. They are just waiting for the eHealth bill to become a law. It helps make health data available “in the clouds.” With that, health details can be accessible anywhere nationwide. This gives easier access to government and private health services to benefit more people without too much cost using technology.
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Executive Order No. 12 for Modern Family Planning
Executive Order No. 12’a title is “Attaining and Sustaining Zero Unmet Need for Modern Family Planning Services through the Strict Implementation of the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act, Providing Funds Therefore and for Other Purposes.” This Order aims to intensify and accelerate the implementation of critical actions necessary. It has a goal to sustain ‘zero unmet need for modern family planning’ by 2018 for the poor. All Filipinos must benefit from this provision as per the RH Law and its implementing rules after prioritizing those who cannot afford it. Nevertheless, the working class who are always on the go also have immediate medical needs. The Department of Health is currently pursuing that.
The Government’s eHealth Program
The Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) laid out its programs and plans that would help achieve the government’s goal of more accessible health information, services and universal health care for all Filipinos. The project is a collaboration of DOH, DOST and other stakeholders like the academe and the private sector. One initiative is the Philippine Health Information Exchange (PHIE), a centralized system of health-related registries and linkage systems. PHIE stores basic medical records of patients admitted to government health centers to aid the decision-making of health professionals. PHIE is also useful in claiming benefits by patients enrolled in the insurance coverage of the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. or PhilHealth.
Push for eHealth
DOH officials said that a bill is already filed in Congress about two years ago. No news on its progress yet. Therefore, Dr. Alvin B. Marcelo drafts an administrative order to promote the use of eHealth in public health institutions. He is confident that they are now equipped to set its standards and the Data Privacy Act protects their process. So, it’s the right time to push the eHealth Bill into a law,” Marcelo said. Meanwhile, Dr. Crispinita Valdez, director of DOH-Information Management Service, presents the draft of an executive order that can finally push for the implementation of eHealth for both the public and private sectors.
Telemedicine or eHealth Safety Measures by Bongbong Marcos
In international terms, Telemedicine is the use of telecommunication and information technology to provide clinical health care where the doctor is to the patient at a distance. It helps eliminate distance barriers and can improve access to medical services in real time that would often not be consistently available in distant rural communities. Since internet use is crucial to telemedicine or eHealth, the Cybercrime Prevention Act and the National Health Insurance Act that Bongbong Marcos co-authored are vital for the safety of its users together with the Data Privacy Act of 2012 or DPA, principally authored by former Senator Edgardo J. Angara. Apart from the government sector’s eHealth programs, an international telemedicine provider, RingMD is already in the country to introduce its medical services platform to possible health partners in the near future. This can very well serve busy people in the cities or elsewhere anytime it is needed without lining up in doctors’ clinics. If Uber patrons enjoy the convenience it brings to their transport needs, RingMD is definitely the answer to their medical requirements. Doctors who are not yet in RingMD’s network can email firstname.lastname@example.org