A first-term legislator has filed a bill seeking health insurance for public school teachers following the recent bus accident in Orani, Bataan on Saturday, which killed one teacher and injured 21 others.
Quezon City Rep. Patrick Michael Vargas said House Bill (HB) 4074, also known as the “Health Care for Public School Teachers Bill”, aims to provide health maintenance organization (HMO) insurance for all public-school teachers under the Department of Education (DepEd).
“This unfortunate incident that befell our QC teachers saddens all members of the community. As we pray for the recovery of the affected teachers and their families, it is imperative that we ensure further protection for the health and wellbeing of all our public-school teachers by institutionalizing better healthcare programs for them,” Vargas said in filing the bill.
The Department of Education (DepEd)-Quezon City has reported that 141 public elementary and high school teachers attending a gender and development activity at Sinagtala Resort, Bataan was ferried by three buses when one of the DepEd buses carrying 48 passengers lost its break in a sharp curve leading to the bus plunging into a 15-meter ravine.
The Quezon City school division officials, with the Quezon City local government, are now arranging the transport of the teacher’s remains and the recovery of the injured.
Vargas has noted that nine of the injured teachers are from District V, Quezon City and will be receiving medical assistance from his office. He has also offered his condolences and support to the family of the teacher who passed away.
“A healthcare program for our noble teachers will not only protect the health and wellbeing of our education sector but will also contribute to the general promotion of public health in our communities,” Vargas said.
HB 4074 mandates the Department of Education to procure a contract with HMOs duly recognized and accepted by hospitals all over the country through competitive bidding which may be done nationally or regionally.
“Our educators should be in their best possible physical and mental condition to attend to the educational needs of our communities. We must invest in the health of our heroes who mold the minds of our children and our future.,” Vargas added.