Capitol launches medical program for indigent patients

THE Cebu Provincial Government has launched Helping Indigents through Medical Support for Sugbuanon (HimsSugbo), a program that will provide free medicines, medical supplies and diagnostic services to Cebuano indigent patients.

The launch at Capitol in Cebu City on Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 15, 2022 was marked by the signing of a memorandum of agreement between the Province, led by Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia, and the program’s more than 40 partner-merchants, including pharmacies, medical suppliers and diagnostic service providers.

HimsSugbo will not release cash to the beneficiaries but instead it will use QR-coded prescriptions to provide the assistance, a system that is already successfully implemented in other Capitol initiatives such as Sugbo Negosyo and Dasig Sugbo.

“What we have just done this afternoon and being witnessed by the rest of Cebu is a groundbreaking and innovative and the first-of-its-kind program in being able to truly assist those that cannot afford the drugs, medicines, the supplies, laboratory services unless we extend help,” Garcia said on Tuesday through Sugbo News, Capitol’s official media arm.

HimsSugbo has an initial budget of P80 million—P50 million from the Malasakit Funds sourced from the Office of the President and another P30 million from the Department of Health.

During the same program, the United States Agency for International Development (Usaid) and Capitol also marked a ceremonial deed of acceptance for the former’s donation of over P9 million worth of medical and health services-related items to the Provincial Government.

Usaid regional manager Miguel Lucero signed the document with Governor Garcia.

The partner-merchants expressed their full support and gratitude to Capitol for being included in the program HimsSugbo.

The governor prided how the Capitol has been able to innovate its program using technology like the QR code system to ensure that the assistance goes to where it is intended.

Under HimsSugbo program, indigent beneficiaries, including those confined in Capitol-run hospitals, will be given QR-coded prescriptions or the so-called QRX, which they will use in redeeming medicines, medical supplies, and diagnostic services from Capitol’s supplier-partners.

The QRX must have all three signatures of the attending physician, social welfare officer and chief of hospital for it to be honored by the supplier.

Similar to how it is done in Sugbo Negosyo and Dasig Sugbo programs, Capitol will pay directly to the suppliers through a web-based debit system depending on how much assistance has been released. (PR)