Cebu City dad wants provision of Expanded Senior Citizens Act amended
Councilor: In emergency cases, allow seniors' reps to buy meds without authorization letter
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Council is set to request the two members of the House of Representatives of the city — Rep. Eduardo “Edu” Rama, Jr. and Rep. Rachel “Cutie” del Mar — to study the possibility of amending a provision of Republic Act No. 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010.
This was after the City Council during its regular session on Wednesday, August 10, carried the motion filed by Councilor Pastor “Jun” Alcover.
Alcover, in a privilege speech, pointed out the Law’s alleged lack of provision for instances of emergency, when a senior citizen’s representative would fail to bring with them an authorization letter when purchasing medicine in pharmacies in the city.
Alcover, in his speech, recalled his personal experience in a pharmacy in Cebu City, when his representative, allegedly, was not allowed to avail of the express lane for senior citizens due to lack of authorization letter.
Alcover, who is also a senior citizen, however, said his representative was bringing with him his senior citizen ID during that time.
Aside from his personal experience, Alcover said that he also received the same concern from other senior citizens.
Section 4 of the that law talks about the privileges for senior citizens including express lane, discounts, and services for senior citizens and the requirements for the availment of these.
“Kani na section wala makapredict na kung adunay “emergency medical situations” unya wala makadala ang iyang gisugo og “authorization letter.” Unsay mahitabo sa gisugo?,” he said.
(This section did not predict if there are “emergency medical situations” and the representative failed to bring an “authorization letter.” What will happen to the representative?)
“Dili kini tagdon sa mga botikaug mulinya kini sa regular lane. Pero kaning paghatag og ‘express lane’ or ‘priority’ sa senior citizens ug sa ilang ‘representatives’ kay wala may mawala na ginansya sa mga botika niini,” he said.
(Well, he will be ignored at the pharmacy and he will have to queue at the regular lane. But no profit is lost from the pharmacy by giving the senior citizens and their representatives an ‘express lane’ or priority lane.)
“Kung ang abuso ang rason nganong kinahanglan ang “authorization letter” sa representative, pwede man maghimo og listahan ang Department of Trade and Industry sa pila ra ka items o goods ang mapalit ug makadawat og discount,” he added.
(If the reason is abuse as to why an “authorization letter” is needed by the (senior citizen’s) representative, then Department of Trade and Industry can make a list of the items and good that they can buy or purchase which will receive a discount.)
Alcover then moved to request House Representatives Rama and Del Mar to study the possibility of amending section 4(L) of Republic Act No. 9994 by adding a provision.
These will include in case when the senior citizen is not physically present during the purchase of the medicine, it will be enough that his or her representative shall present identification card issued by the Office of the Senior Citizen Affairs (OSCA) and purchase booklet by the OSCA.
“All other purchases on commercial establishments other than pharmacies, the representative of senior citizen is only required to present identification card of the senior citizen represented. Provided, the Department of Trade and Industry shall provide lists on the number of goods (that) may be purchased within the same day,” he added.
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