Press Release
July 9, 2019

De Lima eyes proper compensation, incentives for barangay health workers

Opposition Senator Leila M. de Lima wants proper compensation and incentives be given to Barangay Health Workers (BHWs) in the country, in recognition of their sacrifices and tireless efforts in keeping communities healthy.

De Lima has filed Senate Bill No. 185, or the Magna Carta for Barangay Health Workers, seeking to amend the Republic Act No. 7883, also known as "Barangay Health Workers' Benefits and Incentives Act of 1995," to provide more benefits and compensation to community health workers.

"With all the undeniably heroic roles and myriad responsibilities that BHW play in our health sector, it is only right and important that they receive what they deserve in terms of compensation and incentives," De Lima said in her measure's explanatory note.

"The legislation therefore aims to strengthen the barangay unit by revising and repealing the existing law in order to recognize and acknowledge the valuable sacrifices and tireless efforts of BHWs through instituting the Magna Carta for Barangay Health Workers," added De Lima, a social justice and human rights champion.

If enacted into law, De Lima's measure will make BHWs an appointee of the Municipal or City Mayor, entitling them to allowances and other benefits being received by other appointed barangay officials.

In addition, De Lima's measure aims to mandate the appointment of least five BHWs in each barangay to ensure that communities have sufficient number of skilled health care providers.

The measure also seeks to professionalize BHWs by requiring them to undergo accreditation and competency assessment and a Mandatory Continuing Community-based Health Education (MCCHE) every three years to guarantee that they are well-equipped in addressing the health needs of the more than 42,000 barangays in the country.

Furthermore, De Lima wants BHWs to receive additional benefits, such as ₱6,000.00-worth of honorarium, compulsory Philhealth coverage, and transportation allowance, among others.

"This is also to encourage more people to act as frontliners in primary health care in their respective localities," De Lima stressed, adding that it is high time for BHWs to receive the benefits and compensation they deserve.

SB No. 185 is one of the first 10 priority measures De Lima filed for the 18th Congress where she is poised to retain her chairmanship of the Senate Committee on Social Justice, Welfare and Rural Development.

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