Green cards for Dagupeños

By Ermin Garcia Jr.


THERE’S another reason to feel privileged, special and happy about being a resident of Dagupan.

On top of all the bold and fresh initiatives of the Belen Fernandez administration, a draft ordinance is now pending at the Sangguniang Panlungsod that gives a direct and special privilege to Dagupeños, particularly, the indigent sector.


It is akin to Makati City’s Blue card that extends free medical benefits in addition to PhilHealth benefits, making Makati residents feel extra-special to the local government.

Dagupan’s Green Card once approved will become the envy of other towns and cities in Pangasinan. Notably, it realistically acknowledges situations in our families and medical needs.

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IMPORTANT TERMS. Below are the salient provisions of the Green Card:

The mother will be the principal card holder. How can you be wrong about this? 

There are other options for other members of the family who could qualify as the card holder, including situations when the mother is no longer alive, if parents are separated, if unwed single parent, unwed adult who has no children but has in her custody her aging parent, legally separated individuals who have no children, single individuals. Or, when the husband or live-partner, unmarried children can qualify, etc.

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MEANINGFUL BENEFITS. The basic and most important conditions to further qualify requires that the prospective cardholder must be a resident of Dagupan City for ten years except when they are minor children without parents; and,

Dagupan residents to a family household whose family income must be below Twenty-Five thousand pesos a month (P25,000.00) monthly; for those who are not members of a family household, independently living in Dagupan City either as a single or a separated individual, the income must be below Ten Thousand Pesos (P10,000.00) a month.

Benefits?  Beat these:

  1. Free Laboratory Services one time use per year per card

These services include the following: Fasting Blood Sugar, Cholesterol, Triglycerides, LDL, HDL, High Uric Acid, Blood Urea Nitrogen, Creatinine, Complete Blood Count, Urinalysis, Fecalysis, HIV Testing, Sputum Examination

  1. Free ECG, Chest X-ray, Ultrasound one time use per year per card;
  2. Free use of ambulance when necessary
  3. Free confinement at the Lying- In Clinic when necessary
  4. Free anti-hypertension medicines and anti-diabetic medicines when supplies are available;
  5. Free CT Scan when necessary
  6. Other benefits that the City Government may later provide by virtue of an agreement that the mayor may enter into with establishments that are willing to provide free services, free items, or discounts. Should free funeral services be later on available, the beneficiaries are those who are not entitled to any burial assistance from GSIS, SSS or any other agencies, whether public or private.

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FIGHTING CORRUPTION PAYS. How is it possible that cities of Dagupan and Makati can afford health cards programs such as these?

These are possible in local governments that earn huge revenues and banish corrupt officials.

If one quantifies these, those translate to millions which otherwise could have been pocketed by our corrupt elected officials.

In Taguig City that has began to earn more revenues from the Bonifacio Global City has even taken the health program further. After completing its survey of residents by streets and barangays, establishing the number of households and validating medical conditions of the family, needed medicines are delivered to their homes if all that is needed.

So if one wonders what is lost in unabated corruption, look no further. The Green Card program of Dagupan City is proof that fighting corruption pays!

The Dagupan City councilors should lose no time in making this an ordinance.

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TRIBUTES AT THE RIGHT TIME. If there is one real change in our civil society that must be done, it is to stop honoring great men and women who made a difference in the community when they have passed on.

The usual necrological services we organize for these departed great minds and workers really serve nothing but merely to console the surviving members. But what of the dearly departed? He died not knowing that his peers, colleagues and the community acknowledged and appreciated his contributions so others may benefit.

To the civic, religious, education, professional and business sectors, I do hope they will begin to take time to pay tribute to the men and women past their golden age who had accomplished much not only for themselves for the community and the sector they served.

Easily, I can think of one who rightfully deserves recognition not tomorrow but today – Atty. Hermogenes Decano! I’m certain there are many more just as qualified if we’d only start looking beyond ourselves.

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ANINAW AWARDS. I wish to thank the Association of Communications Students of University of Pangasinan for bestowing major awards on The PUNCH and its staffers.

The PUNCH was named again as Best Community Newspaper and Most Popular Community Paper. (Take a bow, Ding Micua, our managing editor). Other awards reserved for Punch writers are: Eva Visperas as Journalist of the year (Female Category), Best News Writer and Best Feature Writer; Willie Lomibao as Best Photojournalist, Jesus Garcia Jr. as Best Sports Writer and Virgilio Biagtan as Best Editorial Cartoonist. The Best Editorial Writer was also reserved for The PUNCH.

Indeed, there is no greater honor than to know you have been adjudged the best.

We will publish the full list of all the awardees in our next issue.  Our sincerest congratulations to our media colleagues who made the mark as well.

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FAKING NEWS. Fake news again reared its ugly head in the direction of Dagupan City aimed at not only creating panic but to discredit the officials on top of the peace and order.

If you want to detect a fake news when you see one, it is all about instilling fear with no specific facts and data about persons involved but very general descriptions.

Here’s that classic example: Andito na sa Dagupan yong mga Kidnaper bandang bolosan Medical centrum may kinuha teen ager tapos sa bolosan elem. school naman 3 ata sila mga grade school students. yong dalaga sa centrum tinutukan daw talaga ng baril sa ulo nakakaalarma po ito mga kababayan mag doble ingat po dahil maski Maliwanag pa sa sikat ng araw ay wala pong pinipiling oras panahon araw itong mga masasamang loob. pag ingatan po natin sarili natin at mga mahal natin sa buhay.

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