Duterte Orders DOH to Prioritize the Risk Allowance of Healthcare Workers
President Rodrigo Duterte orders the Department of Health (DOH) to prioritize the disbursement of risk allowance and other benefits to healthcare workers in the Philippines.
During his pre-recorded Talk to the People on Monday, August 16, he stated, “By the way, just put these front-liners first. If there’s enough money, then pay them.”
Several groups and medical professionals have complained about the non-release of their special risk allowance (SRA) and the removal of other benefits amid COVID-19.
Recently, the Commission on Audit (COA) flagged “deficiencies” under the management of DOH amounting to ₱67 billion.
According to DOH, the funds are accounted for and have been released to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines.
DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III noted that the health department released ₱10.85 billion for the SRA of approximately 740,000 healthcare workers, including ₱4.24 billion for the hazard pay for over 860,000 frontliners.
Duterte earlier signed Administrative Order (AO) No. 42, which grants an SRA of ₱5,000 to healthcare workers in the private and public sectors.
Additionally, the government has allocated over ₱15 billion under Republic Act No. 11494, also known as Bayanihan II, for the SRA and hazard pay of healthcare workers amid COVID-19.