Naga has 7000 PWDs
By Paulo DS. Papa
“The city’s database on PWDs revealed that the sectors total strength as of today runs to more than 7,000 since 2016,” Atty. Paul John Barrosa, head of Persons with Disability Affairs Office said.
In a press briefing, Barrosa, however, clarified that the figure does not mean that disability cases in the city are dramatically rising. He explained that the number comes as an offshoot of a series of surveys and registrations conducted by his office recently which showed that there were indeed PWDs who failed to register in previous years.
It is also disclosed that around 2,000 of that number were diagnosed to be suffering from mental health and need to undergo psychosocial intervention.
The active registrations initiated by the LGU thru the PDAO was conducted for the PWDs to be able to benefit from the programs and privileges of the local government as provided under City Ordinance 2020-072 or the PWD Code of Naga City.
These programs and privileges include the e-PWD ID that the local government is obliged to give every disabled person in the city for them to be able to avail of their PWD privileges under national laws and local ordinances.
Barrosa added that the ID provides PWDs access for privileges such as discount in transport fees, medicine and other basic services offered within the city.
“When I start to serve as the head of PDAO in 2016, the city has registered about 4,000 PWDs living in Naga” he said.
Meanwhile Barrosa bared that there are certain qualifications to meet in order to register a disabled person.
He said the person must first undergo medical check-up at the City Health Office for an physician’s evaluation.
He elaborated that the doctor must consider the patient’s technical and medical condition to confirm his/her disability based from the guidelines of the Department of Health.
“You are not considered a disabled person for having a blurry eyesight. The doctor has to consider your technical and medical condition first in a thorough evaluation” Barrosa said.
Once the doctor confirmed that an applicant is indeed a person with disability, a medical certificate stating his/her disability shall be issued.
Barrosa said that a medical certificate is required by PDAO to register the applicant as PWD. Aside from the certificate, the applicant will also submit copies of his/her birth certificate from the Philippine Statistics Authority, voter’s certificate from the Commission on Election - Naga City office and the barangay certificate of residency.