17/05/2012: PHILIPPINE CONSUL GENERAL TO AGANA ADDRESSES THE MAYORS' COUNCIL OF GUAM
Consul General Bayani V. Mangibin addressing the members of the Mayors' Council of Guam.
Philippine Consul General to Agana, Guam, Hon. Bayani V. Mangibin paid a courtesy visit to the Mayors' Council of Guam during the Council's special monthly meeting on 16 May 2012. The Council is composed of the various village mayors all over the island and is headed by its president, Mayor Melissa Savares of Dededo.
In his address to the Council, Consul General Mangibin thanked the Mayors and Vice Mayors present for the opportunity to meet the Council members in order to facilitate his introduction to the different village Mayors on island. He also expressed appreciation for the friendly relations between the Philippines and Guam and, in particular, between the villages of Guam and the various cities, municipalities and provinces in the Philippines with which they have sister-city agreements. Consul General Mangibin also took the time to address some queries from the village mayors, particularly with respect to the issue of the extension of visas for those seeking medical treatment in the Philippines and the matter of donating goods to their partner cities and municipalities.
The Consul General likewise took advantage of the opportunity to solicit the support of the Council and the village mayors with respect to advocating Medicare portability to the Philippines. Consul General Mangibin stressed that, should this initiative be given due course, this will be beneficial to both the Philippines and the people of Guam. He pointed out that, at the moment, Guam residents are now being allowed to seek medical treatment in the Philippines, although the patients have to pay the costs first and reimburse from Medicare later. He explained that, if Medicare will allow direct payments to the Joint Commission accredited hospitals in the Philippines, Medicare will be able to spend its funds more wisely since the costs of medical treatment in the Philippines are cheaper. It will also enable Medicare to audit the hospitals, thereby preventing the possibility of fraud. He further emphasized that this arrangement will redound to the benefit of Guam residents since they would no longer have to pay the costs of treatment out of their own pockets.
In response, the village mayors expressed appreciation for the Consul General's efforts to push for this initiative. In particular, Mayor Paul McDonald of Agaña Heights, expressed his support on this issue and stated that the Council may pass a Resolution in support of this advocacy.END
Consul General Mangibin listens intently to a query from Mayor Jose Pedro Terlaje of Yona.