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CHO eyes doubling fund for hemophilia treatment

A CITY Health Office (CHO) official said they are pushing more available funds to purchase Factor VIII vials to aid more hemophilia patients under treatment.

Factor VIII or anti-hemophilic factor is a blood-clotting protein essential to quickly stop bleeding in hemophilia patients. People with Hemophilia A are low in Factor VIII protein levels.

In a sideline interview during the regular session on April 30, CHO chief Dr. Thomas Ababon said the present allocated funds for the vials is P500,000 annually.

The annual fund was made possible through then-city mayor and former President Rodrigo Duterte in August 2014.

Ababon said they are looking into a target of P1,000,000 fund allotment.

“I am thinking to ask for another budget na mapa-increase ang atong hemophilia Factor VIII, we are just hoping but kana mag depende sa council and budget,” Ababon said.

Ababon said the present fund can buy an estimated 60 units, which is insufficient to aid patients in the city. The supply of vials from last year’s fund was already consumed in the first week of February.

The official said they are in constant coordination with the Hemophilic Society in Mindanao and found there are more than 300 patients from Mindanao. 

CHO caters to Hemophilia patients from Mindanao, however, they prioritize those who are from Davao City. The vials that every patient needs differ according to the severity of hemophilia, whether twice to thrice a week, or once a month. 

Given the limited number of vials the CHO can provide, patients are often left with no choice but to purchase the vials out of their own pockets.

Dr. Jeannie B. Ong, Southern Philippines Medical Center Department of Pediatrics chairperson, reported on Monday, April 29 in Kapehan sa Dabaw there are 30 to 40 patients regularly visiting SPMC for treatment.

Factor VIII concentrate costs about P6,000 per infusion and is not readily available in pharmacies.

Ababon said they are still waiting for the proposal to be approved as it has to go through the local finance committee of the City Council to be included in the 2025 budget hearing. 



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