A visit to a corner of the Lung Center of the Philippines complex can be heart-breaking. Patients in various stages of critical illness wait in line to seek medical assistance. Without any capacity to pay for lifesaving and essential treatments, the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) is their only lifeline.
A total of 319,091 Filipinos nationwide became beneficiaries of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO)'s medical assistance program under the Duterte administration, a number which the agency expects to significantly increase this 2017, PCSO General Manager Alexander Balutan said.
He said this number shows an increase of 27.7% from the number of beneficiaries in 2015, which came up to 249,751.
The agency spent P3.96 billion for documentary stamp taxes, P2.5 billion for jackpot prizes, P700 million for the shares of local government units, P6.44 million for the shares of STL partners, and P1.7 million for calamity funds, to make up a total of 25.61 billion pesos.
He reported the figures during the meeting with PCSO partners at Berjaya Hotel in Makati City where he also mentioned that medical assistance alone constituted more than 68 percent of PCSO's total charity spending.
He said the total retail receipts of PCSO from January to December 2016 from its various game products reached to P39.56 billion.
The revenues came from PCSO's lotto, KENO, and Sweepstakes (P33.1 billion), and Small Town Lottery (P6.46 billion), Balutan said.
We hope to increase our fund allocation for hospital assistance for 2017, Balutan told PCSO partners.
Balutan has vowed to continue to reform and innovate PCSO's charity games that will benefit more stakeholders.
Changes that will have more significant impact for our gaming public and health beneficiaries, he said.
Balutan also noted that the PCSO revenues come from 10,180 partner agents and with a workforce of 1,183 employees in 56 branches nationwide. The agency was also in the process of adding 35 more STL agents nationwide.
We know our partner agents mean business, but business is charity, Balutan said.
We appreciate the effort you exerted to strengthen our existing partnership, he added.
Aside from assistance for medicines and medical supplies, the PCSO also has Medical and Dental Missions, Institutional Partnership Program, Endowment Fund Program, Military and Police Health Facilities Capability Building Project, Milk Feeding Program, Out Patient Services Program, Auxiliary Ambulance Service, and the Ambulance Donation Program.
We shall be purchasing better ambulance units this year to improve the government's health services delivery system all over the country, Balutan said, noting the distribution of 406 ambulances in 2016.
Indeed, these PCSO initiatives show that the government's programs are inclusive � no one gets left behind in its goal toward a healthier Philippines.
Source: Philippines Information Agency