House Bill No. 168 that seeks the establishment of a hospital for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) has been approved by the House Committee on Ways and Means.
The proposed “Overseas Filipino Workers Hospital Act” authored by Quezon 4th District Rep. Angelina Tan aims to provide better access to and higher quality of healthcare for OFWs.
Tan explained that the OFW Hospital will be a primary healthcare referral facility within the ambit of the healthcare provider network as mandated by the Universal Health Care Act to all migrant workers, Overseas Workers Welfare Administration contributors, and their legal dependents. Also, the OFW Hospital will serve as a facility for would-be OFWs for their physical and mental medical examinations as a requirement for overseas employment.
The proposal has a tax exemption provision, which states that all donations and contributions made to the OFW Hospital to be used solely by the OFW Hospital shall be exempt from donor’s tax and considered as allowable deduction from the gross income of the donor. It also exempts from value-added tax and customs duty the importation of equipment, machinery and spare parts that are not available locally.