The Department of Health (DoH) opened in Marikina City the first-ever Botika ng Bayan (BnB) in Metro Manila that would provide free essential medicines for the public, especially the indigents and marginalized sector on Tuesday.
Mayor Marcelino Teodoro and DOH Undersecretary Eric Domingo led the inauguration of the BnB at the fourth floor of the Marikina City Health Office.
Teodoro expressed gratitude to the DOH for its continuous support to the city government and for choosing the city for the first BnB in the metropolis.
“Salamat sa DOH kasi prino-provide niyo ang health care. Noon pa ay katuwang na natin ang DOH sa mga bakuna, sadyang malaking tulong ang nabigay nila sa atin. Naniniwala kami rito sa Marikina na need talaga ma-prevent ang sakit (Thank you to DOH for providing health care. The DOH has always been with us in administering vaccines and that’s a big help. We believe that in Marikina, getting sick should be prevented),” Teodoro said in his speech.
Teodoro added that health services are important because getting sick is a burden to ordinary families earning barely enough to survive.
“Ang pamilyang Pinoy ay magaling mag-budget, resilient siya by nature, ang problema saan pupunta kung may nagkasakit. Kadalasan sa health centers, reseta lang ang binibigay, walang gamot. At saan-saan kukuha ng gamot, nakapila sa Mayor ,Vice mayor at lahat ng pwede mahingan, matagal mabigay, magaling na ang sakit wala pa ang gamot (The Filipino family is good in budgeting money and is resilient by nature but the problem is when they get sick. They go to health centers and given prescription but they go to the office of the Mayor, Vice Mayor to seek help. Sometimes, they’re already healed before they could even be given help for medicines),” he said.
The BnB program was relaunched in July after temporarily stopped by the DOH in 2011 to address issues on the lack of supervising pharmacists and an effective supply chain that could assure the constant availability of quality generic medicines in some 16,000 government-run community pharmacies established between 2001 to 2010.
Domingo lauded Marikina City for being one of the few cities that sustained the BnB program because of its “effective” governance.
He said the newly opened BnB in Marikina City has complied with all the requirements and has the same standard as the leading drugstores.
“There is License to Operate a pharmacy in Marikina. According to your City Health Office head they will get License to Operate as Distributor. Ang gusto natin ay ang gamot ay (We want a medicine) for most common illnesses o gamot na ibibigay natin lalo na ang maintenance,” Domingo said.
The DOH recently announced the service enhancement to the BnB program such as more essential medicines available for common diseases such as infections, skin ailments, and chronic non-communicable diseases.
The BnB medicines consist of antibiotics, topical ointments, anti-thrombotic, anti-inflammatory, vitamins, antacids and other essential drugs for asthma, hypertension, diabetes and dyslipidemia.
The patients need to just present their prescriptions and get their free medicines. (PNA)