The Republic Act No. 10767 or also known as the Comprehensive Tuberculosis Elimination Plan Act was approved and signed by Hon. Pres. Benigno Aquino III on April 26, 2016. It is Senate Bill No. 2653 which was approved by the Senate on January 18, 2016 was adopted by the House of Representatives as an amendment to House Bill No. 5042 on January 19, 2016.
[REPUBLIC ACT NO. 10767]
AN ACT ESTABLISHING A COMPREHENSIVE PHILIPPINE PLAN OF ACTION TO ELIMINATE TUBERCULOSIS AS A PUBLIC HEALTH PROBLEM AND APPROPRIATING FUND THEREFOR
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:
SECTION 1. Title – This Act shall be known as the “Comprehensive Tuberculosis Elimination Plan Act”.
SEC. 2. Declaration of Policy.– The State is mandated to adopt an integrated and comprehensive approach to health development. Towards this end, the State shall support and expand efforts to eliminate tuberculosis as a public health problem by increasing investments for its prevention, treatment and control, and adopting a multisectoral approach in responding to the disease.
SEC. 3. Definition of Terms. – As used in this Act:
(a) Comprehensive Philippine Plan of Action to Eliminate Tuberculosis refers to the program of the national government for the elimination of tuberculosis in the country; and
(b) Tuberculosis or TB refers to an infectious but curable disease caused by bacteria calledMycobacterium tuberculosis. It is transmitted from a TB patient to another through coughing, sneezing and spitting and while the bacterium usually affects the lungs, it may also affect the bone and other organs like the kidney and the liver.
SEC. 4. Comprehensive Philippine Plan of Action to Eliminate Tuberculosis. – The Secretary of the Department of Health (DOH) shall establish a Comprehensive Philippine Plan of Action to Eliminate Tuberculosis in consultation with appropriate public and private entities. The Philippine Plan of Action shall consist of the following:
(a) The country’s targets and strategies in addressing the disease;
(b) The prevention, diagnosis, treatment, care and support, and other components of the country’s response;
(c) The development and application of appropriate technologies to diagnose and treat the disease;
(d) The strengthening of linkages with local and international organizations for possible partnership in education, advocacy, research and funding assistance;
(e) The establishment of a review and monitoring system to gather data and monitor the progress made in the elimination of tuberculosis; and
(f) The immediate mobilization of anti-TB services during and after natural and man-made disasters through collaborative efforts of national and local governments and other entities.
SEC. 5. Strengthening of the National and Regional Coordinating Committees. – The National Coordinating Committee (NCC) and the Regional Coordinating Committee (RCC) of the DOH shall serve as the National TB Control Program’s (NTP’s) arm in strengthening and supporting nationwide capacity for program operations and bridging collaborative efforts between the public and private sector.
The Secretary of Health shall continue to improve the capability of the existing NCC and RCC in ensuring efficiency in the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the Philippine Plan of Action and in the coordination of efforts of various sectors.
SEC. 6. Research, Demonstration Projects, Education and Training. – The Secretary of Health shall, directly or through grants to public or nonprofit private entities, perform the following activities:
(a) Conduct basic and clinical research based on the health agenda to be developed by partners in the academe, health professional groups and other local health partners with possible support from foreign organizations;
(b) Develop demonstration projects to generate evidence for responsive policies and to develop regional capabilities for the prevention, detection, control, and elimination of tuberculosis;
(c) Conduct nationwide public information campaign and education programs;
(d) Undertake education, training and clinical skills improvement activities for health care providers;
(e) Provide support for model centers to sustain their initiatives under subparagraphs (b), (c) and (d); and
(f) Collaborate with local and foreign organizations for partnership in various activities and in providing technical and funding support.
SEC. 7. Strengthening of the Regional Centers for Health Development in the Provision of Health Services to Eliminate TB. – The Secretary of Health shall strengthen the Regional Centers for Health Development in the provision of health services to eliminate TB by undertaking the following activities:
(a) Provide free laboratory services through the DOH retained hospitals;
(b) Provide reliable supply of drugs to patients for free by ensuring that local health centers, through coordination with local government units (LGUs) concerned, have sufficient supply of medicines for the communities they serve;
(c) Undertake public information and education programs to train the public on basic ways and means to prevent the spread of tuberculosis;
(d) Train and enhance the capability of health providers in both public and private hospitals;
(e) Ensure the proper monitoring of tuberculosis cases in the country; and
(f) Ensure that monitoring services are extended as far as practicable, at the lowest local level health unit.
SEC. 8. Education Programs. – The Secretary of Health, in coordination with the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), shall encourage the faculty of schools of medicine, nursing or medical technology and allied health institutions, to intensify information and education programs, including the development of curricula, to significantly increase the opportunities for students and for practicing providers to learn the principles and practices of preventing, detecting, managing, and controlling tuberculosis.
SEC. 9. Inclusion in Basic Education. – The Secretary of Health, in coordination with the Secretary of the Department of Education (DepED), shall work for the inclusion of modules on the principles and practices of preventing, detecting, managing and controlling tuberculosis in the health curriculum of every public and private elementary and high school.
SEC. 10. Media Campaign. – The Secretary of Health, in coordination with the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), shall encourage local media outlets to launch a media campaign on tuberculosis control, treatment and management, using all forms of multimedia and other electronic means of communication.
The media campaign shall include materials that would discourage the general public from spitting in public places and exhibiting unhygienic behavior that tend to undermine the overall effort of preventing the spread of the disease.
SEC. 11. Regulation on Sale and Use of TB Drugs. – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) shall strengthen its implementation of the “No prescription, No anti-TB drugs” to regulate the sale and use of anti-TB drugs in the market. It shall also ensure the quality of TB drugs distributed in the market.
SEC. 12. Notification on TB Cases. – All public and private health centers, hospitals and facilities shall observe the national protocol on TB management arid shall notify the DOH of all TB cases as prescribed under the Manual of Procedures of the National TB Program and the Philippine Plan of Action on Tuberculosis Control.
SEC. 13. PhilHealth TB Package. – The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, otherwise known as the PhilHealth, shall, as far as practicable, expand its benefit package for TB patients to include new, relapse and return-after-default cases, and extension of treatment.
The PhilHealth shall enhance its present outpatient Directly Observed Treatment Short Course (DOTS) package to make it more responsive to patients’ needs. It shall likewise increase the number of accredited DOTS facilities to widen target beneficiaries who may avail of reimbursements.
SEC. 14. Report. – The Secretary of Health shall submit an annual report to the Committees on Health of the Senate and the House of Representatives on the activities carried out to comply with the provisions of this Act.
SEC. 15. Appropriations. – The amount necessary to implement the provisions of this Act shall be charged against the appropriations of the DOH, the DepED, the CHED and the PIA under the General Appropriations Act.
SEC. 16. Implementing Rules and Regulations. – The DOH, in consultation with the DepED, the CHED, the PIA, the LGUs, nongovernment organizations and other concerned entities, shall issue the rules and regulations implementing the provisions of this Act within ninety (90) days from its effectivity.
SEC. 17. Separability Clause.– If any provision or part hereof is held invalid or declared unconstitutional, the other provisions which are not affected thereby shall continue to be in full force and effect.
SEC. 18. Repealing Clause. – Any law, presidential decree or issuance, executive order, letter of instruction, administrative order, rule or regulation contrary to or inconsistent with the provisions of this Act is hereby repealed, modified or amended accordingly.
SEC. 19. Effectivity. – This Act shall take effect fifteen (15) days after its publication in the Official Gazette or in a newspaper of general circulation.