“I’m so disappointed with the Senator… rather than support the opportunities for our doctors to do all types of research, not just on stem cell… Filipinos can jumpstart medical research, comparing it with research capacity of other countries—that’s what I would want to hear from her,” Health Secretary Enrique Ona said Friday.
Sen. Nancy Binay questioned to senate inquiry the P70 million allocation of the Lung Center of the Philippines for the Stem Cell Research under the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP). According to Binay, the fund could have been used to purchase more beds in government hospitals. “Hindi niyo ba naisip to buy hospital beds instead of stem cell research? 70 million pesos is equivalent to 1,400 beds,” she said.
However, Ona said the Department of Health has already acquired 8,000-10,000 hospital beds for government hospitals and the research being done by the said facility can be used not just to cure lung cancer or COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) but also other chronic illnesses.
“I hope they don’t simplify medical research with [the number of] beds,” he said, adding that those making such comments appeared to have limited knowledge in medicine.
Meanwhile, the online community also reacted to Senator Nancy Binay’s seemingly short-sighted argument against the stem cell research. According to Gelbert Balandray “Binay’s questions are just nonsense. She just wasted the time of other senators.”
“She will never understand it, and she is just grandstanding.” Said Doc Alfred on Facebook.