PHILIPPINE Health Secretary Teodoro J. Herbosa on Monday vowed to push for a gradual increase in his agency’s annual budget, while calling for cuts in the government’s allocation for health infrastructure projects, which he said are not immediately felt by Filipinos.
The budget for health should be increased to at least 15% of the country’s gross domestic product from 5.28%, he told a news briefing.
The US spends 17% of economic output for health, while Japan and Singapore allot 15%, he said.
He also said the Health department, like other agencies, faces budget absorptive capacity issues. “So I need to do this slowly.”
Meanwhile, the Health department is set to issue an administrative order creating a National Nursing Advisory Council composed of experts from both the public and private sectors.
The council will help address issues faced by Filipino nurses, Mr. Herbosa said. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza