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Solons want to build and improve hospitals specifically for the elderly.

The estimated 10 million older adults in the nation will receive specialized healthcare thanks to two senators’ initiatives.

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According to Senate Bill 979, also known as the Senior Citizens Hospital Act, a 200-bed tertiary specialty hospital for geriatrics will be constructed in Cagayan de Oro City, Misamis Oriental, and would be called the Philippine Geriatric Medical Center (PGMC).

A program for the poor must be adopted and implemented by the PGMC, with at least 50% of funds set aside for them.

In a news release on Sunday, Pimentel stated, “We believe that the elderly should have priority treatment and help from the government, just as there are specialist facilities for pediatric and obstetrics.

Moreover, Senator Risa Hontiveros submitted Senate Bill No. 1317 to change the name of the National Center for Elderly Health, which is situated in San Miguel, Manila, to the Philippine Geriatric Center while keeping it directly under the Department of Health’s jurisdiction and oversight.

According to Hontiveros’ bill, the present hospital growth plan, current bed capacity, and service capabilities, including organizational structure, must be modified.

Another news release from her stated, “Most of our aging population have little financial resources, making the highly specialized profession of geriatric medical and long-term care even more out of reach.

According to a report by the Philippine Statistics Authority, senior persons now make up 9.22 million households, or 8.5 percent of all households, up from 7.53 million households, or 7.5 percent, in 2015.

By 2030, the Filipino population will be getting older. This offers us even more justification to build and maintain facilities that are specifically designed to meet their needs, especially for individuals who lack a support network or financial means, noted Pimentel.

A measure to establish the National Center for Geriatric Health and Research Institute (NCGHRI) was approved by the House of Representatives in January 2022, but it did not succeed.

An integrated medical institution with a focus on geriatric health care would need to be established, operated, equipped, and maintained by the NCGHRI, and specialized medical facilities and geriatric specialist centers would spring up in all regions.

According to the bill, hospital expenses would be reduced to about PHP50,000 per patient, and senior citizen care will be improved generally.

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