The Department of Health (DOH) has allotted Php 311-million to deliver health workers’ special risk allowance (SRA), according to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III. 

The funding came from the department’s contingency fund and will cover the period of December 1, 2020, to June 30, 2021. 

In last night’s (August 24) taped briefing, Duque said they’ve already submitted the required documents to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) for the release of the funding. 

Duque noted that they’re only waiting for the special allowance release order (SARO) from the DBM. Once it arrives, the agency will immediately start processing the distribution of the funds to hospitals. 

“We’re hoping the DBM will release the SARO tomorrow. We have been following it up with them,” he said.

“We are committed to deliver on the same timeframe that you have indicated last Friday,” he added.

Over the weekend, President Rodrigo Duterte ordered DOH and DBM to deliver the SRAs of health workers within 10 days, utilizing whatever money the government has to do so. 

“Iyong mga nagrereklamong frontliners about their allowances, or about whatever, pati itong volunteers na magbakuna, I am ordering Secretary Duque, bayaran mo. Use whatever money there is, “Duterte said in a taped briefing that aired Saturday.

“It’s an order, Secretary Duque, bayaran mo ‘yung mga hinihingi ng nurses, both in government and outside. Pag wala kang pera, gastusin mo lahat ng ano diyan,” he added. 

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Image credit: DOH; Basilio H. Sepe / Majority World / Universal Images Group via Getty Images