BACOLOD City – About five properties are being offered for donation to the government for the establishment of the Bacolod City General Hospital under Republic Act (RA) 11564 signed by President Rodrigo Duterte last June 24.
As of Tuesday, four locations have been identified by the donors while the site of the fifth property has not been disclosed yet.
Lone District Rep. Greg Gasataya said in an interview the four offered lands are located in Barangays Alijis, Bata, Felisa, and Vista Alegre.
“That’s the advantage since the government no longer have to spend for the land since it will be donated,” he added.
The lawmaker said the offered properties have the size of 3 to 3.5 hectares.
“The moment the (Covid-19) situation will improve in Metro Manila, I will request the Department of Health (DOH) officials to come for a meeting with the local government unit and finalize the location of hospital. We’re hoping by early next year, the construction will already start,” he said.
In the proposal for next year’s national budget, a fund of PHP250 million has been allocated for the construction of the city hospital, Gasataya said.
“This is the response of the DOH to my request. I checked the 2022 proposed national budget and the Bacolod City General Hospital is included,” he added.
Gasataya said that during the visit of House Speaker Lord Allan Velasco to the city on Sept. 3, he showed him the design perspective for the city hospital, and the latter immediately committed to source additional funds for the construction.
“Within the week, I’ll send to him a copy of the perspective and other details,” he added.
The lawmaker said the Department of Public Works and Highways has been working on the design perspective and related requirements for the project.
Last month, Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri confirmed that he is sourcing the amount of PHP200 million to augment the allocation for the establishment of the Bacolod City General Hospital.
Zubiri, who traces his roots to Bacolod City and Negros Occidental, sponsored the counterpart Senate Bill 1647 for the creation of the city’s own hospital while Gasataya authored House Bill 6731 on the establishment of the health facility.
The bill’s Senate version has allotted a budget of PHP600 million for the establishment of the Bacolod City General Hospital, which will be included in the 2022 General Appropriations Act under the DOH-Health Facilities Enhancement Program. (PNA)