Davao City (DSWD XI) – Clients of Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Davao and even those from nearby regions need not go to different government offices when seeking assistance for health services as the Lingap Para sa Bayan interagency one-stop shop office has opened at the state-owned Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) compound.

Lingap Para sa Bayan is a facility that caters the processing of health services offered by Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PHIC), Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), and Davao’s City Social Services and Development Office (CSSDO).

Director Mercedita P. Jabagat of DSWD said the first ever one-stop shop for health services in Davao City does not only serve patients from the city but also those from other provinces, towns and cities in Mindanao.

The shop is expected to hasten delivery of services to poor patients and individuals in crisis, who need not hop from one office to another to get medical assistance.

Davao City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio said the one-stop shop will make processing of medical assistance easier. “We created this so that people would not need to run to and fro from other offices to seek medical services. We have to look for ways to help the people, make it easy for them to access services, that is the essence of the one stop shop.”

The Lingap will have its permanent office once the P20 million-worth building construction is finished this year inside the SPMC.

Lingap Para Sa Bayan is different from the Lingap Para Sa Mahihirap, the latter being the city government’s health services program for indigents of the city, providing financial and medical support to Dabawenyos for years now.

CSSDO chief Maria Luisa T. Bermudo said that within the Lingap Para sa Bayan office, a social worker staff will assist and direct the families or guardians of the patients after reviewing their documents.

Putting together all agencies offering medical assistance would not only provide convenience to patients but also ensure there is no duplication in the beneficiaries and support.

In 2017, the one-stop shop has assisted medicine needs of 11,543 patients through the DSWD Lingap at Gabay Para sa May Sakit (LinGap Sa MaSa) which now covers prosthetics, assistive devices, laboratory procedures and medical supplies.

A medicine assistance program of the Office of the President, LinGap Sa MaSa helps indigent Filipinos or Filipinos in crisis needing treatment for illness or injuries. In 2017, DSWD desks were established in identified partner hospitals in regions NCR, 3, 6, 7 and 11 to carry out the program.

Director Jabagat said apart from the initially identified hospitals, district and provincial hospitals and other regional hospitals operated by government shall soon implement the program to cater to qualified local residents.

In 2017, DSWD Region XI disbursed a total of Php 134,922,703.62 million to patients of SPMC and Davao Regional Medical Center in Tagum City which was able to serve 2921 through Lingap Sa MaSa. (DSWD)