DBM: Cancer aid fund now available

The P529.2 million fund to aid cancer patients is now available, the Department of Budget and Management announced on Monday.

Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman expressed hope that the budget would alleviate the burden of cancer patients.

“We hope that it will ease the burden of many cancer patients, as we know that cancer is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality amongst Filipinos,” Pangandaman said.

According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, cancer is the fourth leading cause of death in the Philippines from January to December 2021.

Together with the Department of Health, DBM released the Joint Memorandum Circular No. 2022 – 0002 prescribing the Implementing Guidelines for the Use of Cancer Assistance Fund on 28 September 2022.

The Budget Department explained that the provision of P529.2 million is anchored on Special Provisions No. 13 of the DoH budget under the 2022 General Appropriations Act, which requires the issuance of the JMC as a pre-requisite for the utilization of the fund.

It added that the budget pursuant to Republic Act 11215 or the National Integrated Cancer Control Act seeks to provide integrated and holistic support to cancer treatment and management.

CAF seeks to supplement existing financial support mechanisms exclusive to cancer patients, persons living with cancer, and cancer survivors.

Moreover, it will fund outpatient and inpatient cancer control services, diagnostics, therapeutic procedures, and other cancer medicines needed for the treatment and management of cancer and its care-related components.

The funds will be available for utilization until 31 December 2023, which the DBM said is in line with the adoption of the cash-based budgeting system.

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