Half of the Philippine population is deprived of the primary healthcare facilities in the country within 30minutes,the Department of Health (DOH) revealed Thursday.

“For our primary care facilities po, we’ve mapped out 2,593 approximately, for private facilities, it’s 1,500 and we see that 50 percent of our population still do not have access in to a primary care facility within 30 minutes,” Health Undersecretary Dr. Lilibeth David during the Senate hearing where she presented the Philippine Health Facility Development Plan for 2020 to 2040.

These gaps are usually in the Bicol Region, MIMAROPA, and the Bangsamaro Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

“‘Our goal is all of our population will have access to a primary care facility within 30 minutes,” David added, citing the ideal situation based on the Universal Health Care (UHC) Law.

The DOH official also reported that the bed density in the country has a great gap, with 1.2 beds per 1,000 population ratio, comparable to countries in Sub-Saharan, Africa.

“If we really hope to become upper-middle country, that target that we want to have is at least 4 beds per 1,000,” David added. Ronald dela Cruz