Healthy Philippines Alliance (HPA), a coalition of health-focused and patient support organizations, has called on lawmakers to increase the Department of Health’s (DOH) proposed budget for 2023 to focus on programs that can prevent and control the rise of non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

NCDs, also known as chronic diseases, include cancers, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, and
mental health.

Out of its proposed P301-billion budget for 2023, the DOH initially requested P2.10 billion to fund efforts to combat NCDs, including providing mental health commodities to 362 access sites and cancer commodities to 31 access sites.

The DOH, during the Senate hearing on its proposed budget, requested for more additional funding for various programs, particularly P500 million for its cancer assistance fund as part of the implementation of the National Integrated Cancer Control Act of 2019, which serves as the framework for all cancer-related activities of the government.

“The Health Department’s request for more funding for its NCD prevention programs should be granted, considering the significant increase of NCDs following the Covid-19 pandemic ,” Paul Mendoza of Healthy Philippines Alliance, said in a statement.

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