The Department of Health (DOH), through Officer-in-Charge Secretary Dr. Maria Rosario Singh-Vergeire, joined the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Philippine Development Plan (PDP) Forum for 2023-2028 last monday, January 30, 2023 to show strong support of the DOH on the launching and implementation of the PDP 2023-2028. OIC Vergeire  discussed in the panel the DOH’s Health Sector Strategy 2023-2028, which outlines the agency’s key actions to combat leading health sector issues in line with the PDP and AmBisyon 2040. 

President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. recently signed the PDP 2023-2028, last January 27, 2023, to augment the country’s economic development and social transformation. In line with this, the DOH has contributed to discussions pertaining to the country’s social transformation and its ways forward by laying out the Health Sector Strategy for 2023-2028.

The vision of the plan gives emphasis on to vital components included in the Health Sector Strategy, highlighting four major pillars of the framework – (1) a society that promotes physical, mental, and social well-being, (2) empowering communities and households to make healthy and informed choices, (3) giving access to both public and private health care delivery systems, and (4) capacitating measures to bolster the health system in support of other outcomes. With this in mind, the DOH now aims to achieve four major strategic outcomes – (1) improving the social determinants of health, (2) enabling healthy choices and behavior, (3) improving the Filipinos’ access to quality and efficient health care, and (4) strengthening of the country’s health systems.

As a form of making health services accessible for the people, the DOH established the National Patient Navigation and Referral Center (formerly known as the One Hospital Command Center), which integrates care through health care provider networks (HCPN) — from the primary care facilities across all regions to establishing more specialty centers across the country.

“Eventually all of [our strategies] would contribute to realizing the goals of the Universal Health Care Act for everybody and this is the priority and primary goal of the Department of Health in the years to come — through a whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach, the DOH commits to delivering better quality healthcare services, creating healthier settings, and better health outcomes for every Filipino and kababayan in line with the Philippine Development Plan and Health Sector Strategy 2023-2028,” said OIC Health Chief Dr. Maria Rosario Singh-Vergeire.