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PIA Press Release

Capiz gov gives Valentine gift to elderly

by Jemin B. Guillermo

Roxas City (14 February) -- Some 200 poorest of the poor senior citizens in Roxas City will benefit from Governor Victor Tanco's free anti-pneumonia vaccination program.

Governor Tanco said that this is part of his Valentine gift to the indigent elderly in Roxas City in partnership with the Initiative Collaborations to Health Optimization through Universal Pneumococcal-vaccine access in the Philippines (IC HoPpE) foundation.

Tanco, in a radio interview, said that the 200 indigent senior citizens in Roxas City will be first beneficiaries of the program, however, another free vaccination will be done on April 15 during the province's anniversary.

He pointed out that they are planning to expand the coverage to indigent senior citizens in the municipalities of the province.

Dr. Francis Bonn Blanco, Founder and Program Executive Director of IC HoPpE, disclosed that the First Capiz and Federation of Senior Citizens Association of the Philippines (FSCAP) Vaccination Festival that started in February 12 until 14 is the pioneer project activity of the foundation.

Blanco explained that, together with Gov. Tanco who is the co-founder of said foundation, they have chosen the senior citizens as beneficiaries being the most vulnerable individuals to pneumonia.

He stressed the movement against pneumonia through vaccination is a must to decrease by 50 percent the deaths of individuals aged 50 years old and above.

The elderly deserves the best care and highest standard of health care, Tanco said, urging Capiceņos to have access to pneumococcal vaccine to prolong their lives.

Earlier, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo moved for the strengthening of the country's healthcare program for elderly persons through legislation, institutionalization and exchange of knowledge and experiences on increasing the life expectancy of Filipinos.

The President noted that there is an apparent lack of trained health professionals in the field of Geriatrics and Gerontology and saw the need to expand the institutionalization of geriatric care in the country to improve the government's healthcare program for the elderly persons. (PIA) [top]

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