(The Manila Times)
The Province of Sulu, one of the poorest provinces identified by the National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC) is selected as one of the focus provinces of the Integrated Health for Overall Productivity and Empowerment (I-HOPE) program of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Ofiice.
The program aims to implement responsive and efficient fund provision for health and charitable programs of the government by providing access to charity services for four NAPC-identified poorest provinces.
Based on the following criteria, the selection was made, to wit: Inclusion in the bottom (poorest) cluster of provinces of the Philippines, based on data from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), particularly on data indicative of poverty incidence among families in these provinces (Primary Inclusion Criterion); Inclusion in the list of priority LGUs under the PCSO-DOH Medical Scholarship Program (Secondary Inclusion Criterion); and Presence of a PCSO Branch Office (Exclusion Criterion).
To discuss the I-HOPE Program and its implementation, the Charity Assistance Department (CAD) conducted an Orientation and Coordination Conference for the Sulu leg on May 24 at Casa Blanca, Vista Del Mar Resort, Upper Calarian, Zamboanga City.
Present during the activity were Assistant General Manager for Charity Dr. Larry Cedro, CAD Manager Rubin Magno, Zamboanga del Sur Branch Manager Raul Regondola, personnel of the Special Project Division of Charity Assistance Department and officers from the Integrated Provincial Health Office of Sulu headed by Provincial Health Officer 2 Dr. Fahra Oman.
In the short program, Magno gave the opening remarks, followed by a message given by Cedro. Oman briefly discussed the background of the province, the past and present condition of their hospital and rural health care units and the medical history of their constituents.
Before the open forum, Dindo De Viterbo presented the Briefer on the PCSO I-HOPE program. Regondola delivered the closing remarks.
At the end of the activity, PCSO and IPHO of Sulu agreed to work hand-in-hand to fulfill the objectives of the I-Hope program wherein the local government units and their constituents will benefit from it.
The scope of charity services of I-HOPE includes: Quality of Medical Attendance—financial assistance for the procurement of medical equipment (Medical Equipment Donation Program); Preventive Healt—donation of primary healthcare capability building packages (Primary Healthcare Capability-Building Program), donation of medicines (Medicine Donation Program) and implementation of nutritional supplementation projects (Milk Feeding Program); and Therapeutic Services—financial assistance to individuals for medical services through endowment funds in hospitals (Endowment Fund Program), financial assistance to individuals for medical services through the “Át-Source and Processing” (ASAP) facility (Individual Medical Assistance Program).