The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) in Region 7 (Central Visayas) will resume monitoring the compliance of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiaries with 4Ps conditionalities, particularly on health, to ensure their well-being.
Rebecca Geamala, DSWD-7 regional director, on Wednesday said the DSWD will be lifting the waiver on program conditionalities imposed last February at the outset of the pandemic, citing “force majeure” circumstances brought about by the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) crisis.
“This means that beneficiaries will be receiving their full grants for the said period without compliance to program conditions,” Geamala said in a statement.
This supports government efforts to curtail the spread of Covid-19 and prevent other public health threats such as severe malnutrition and vaccine-preventable diseases outbreak, she said.
Under Rule VIII Section 15 of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act 11310, the “Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) Act”, the DSWD Secretary may suspend the monitoring of compliance of beneficiaries with program conditionalities when there is “force majeure”.
The conditionalities include sending 4Ps beneficiaries’ school-aged children to school, pre and post-natal care for mothers, regular and preventive check-ups for children aged five and below, deworming for children aged 14 and below, and attendance to the monthly conduct of the Family Development Session (FDS).
In its statement, the DSWD-7 said they are now urging “program beneficiaries to visit their respective health centers but strictly following the minimum health standard set by the government”.
“DSWD-7 advises beneficiaries to coordinate with their barangay health workers on how to avail of the health services like the schedule of their health center visit, home visit, telemedicine, or other mechanisms used by the Department of Health (DOH),” it said.
It also said that the DSWD-7 endeavors “to prevent overcrowding in the health centers and to maintain physical distancing among the health care providers and program beneficiaries” to prevent spread and transmission in health care facilities in villages.
The resumption of health care monitoring, however, does not include the conduct of the FDS that gathers 4Ps partner-beneficiaries on a monthly basis, considering that such family formation program is still suspended as of press time.
Geamala, however, said the DSWD is finding alternative ways to facilitate the FDS through “media channels” like television, radio or social media.
The 4Ps is a national poverty reduction strategy of the national government. It invests in the health, nutrition and education of poor households for the improved well-being of the Filipinos. (PNA)