By Jun Cinco
Published: November 22, 2012
Workers led by labor center Kilusang Mayo Uno slammed the Aquino administration’s plan to privatize government hospitals, saying the planned privatization will increase the burden of Filipino workers and people.
In a protest in front of the Philippine General Hospital in Manila this morning, the workers said hospitalization fees will surely increase the moment public hospitals are privatized.
“The Aquino government is clearly abandoning its duty to provide accessible healthcare to workers and the Filipino people, which is our basic right,” KMU secretary-general Roger Soluta said.
“With our meager wages, it is already hard for workers to get proper medication and healthcare service. The privatization of government hospitals would make it impossible for us to be treated in hospitals despite the fact that we pay our taxes,” he added.
The labor center slammed the Aquino government for hiding behind euphemisms for privatization, saying the government will face continued protests until the plan to privatize public hospitals is junked.
“Instead of upholding our rights, Aquino is selling us our rights! When public hospitals are privatized, workers would have to pay, and pay more to get healthcare,” Soluta said.
“As it is, workers and the poor go to hospitals when ailments are already at a chronic stage. Expensive hospitalization will mean certain death for Filipino workers and people,” he added.
KMU also said that privatization has led to the skyrocketing payments for basic public services and utilities.
“When Petron was privatized, oil prices skyrocketed and became. When Napocor was privatized, workers and the people have been electrocuted by high power rates. Now, the government wants to privatize public hospitals?” Soluta said.
“We have every right to resist and stop Aquino’s plan to yet again renege on its duty to provide healthcare and transform this into become business ventures for private corporations,” he added.
“We call on workers and the people to protest Aquino’s plan to privatize public hospitals. We must fight for our right to healthcare service,” he ended.