REPUBLIC ACT NO. 1939 June 22, 1957


Sec. 1. It shall be the duty of the government to provide at least one free general hospital bed for every five thousand population in each province.

Sec. 2. In order to realize this end, the construction of hospital buildings and the operation and maintenance of all free beds in government hospitals shall be financed from contributions among the Municipal, City, Provincial, and National Governments concerned, at the following prescribed fixed rates:

(a) Every Municipal or City government belonging to the second and first class groups, shall contribute five (5%) per centum of its annual general income for the support of the general hospital or hospitals in the province, and the municipalities belonging to the third and fourth class groups shall contribute three (3%) per centum of its general annual income, but when a hospital is established in a particular municipality or city, the municipality or city concerned shall contribute at least seven (7%) per centum of its annual general income: Provided, That the City of Manila shall contribute only one (1%) per centum of its annual general income which shall be equally divided among government general hospitals under the Bureau of Hospitals in Manila for their operation and maintenance and/or for expansion purposes: Provided, further, That municipalities which are situated beyond 35 kilometers from the nearest national or provincial hospital by ordinary land transportation or beyond 20 kilometers by water transportation, shall only contribute four (4%) per centum of their annual general income, if the municipalities belong to the first and second class, and two (2%) per centum if the municipalities belong to the third and fourth class: And provided, finally, That municipalities of the fifth class shall not be required to pay the contribution provided in this section.

(b) Cities or municipalities operating and maintaining or which shall operate and maintain public general hospitals are exempt from the provisions of this Section: Provided; That these hospitals conform with the requirements and standards set forth by the Department of Health: And provided, further, That such hospitals shall provide one general hospital bed for every 5,000 population of the municipality or city concerned.

(c) Every province shall contribute five (5%) per centum of its annual general income for the support of the government general hospital or hospitals in the province: Provided, That in provinces where the ratio is more than one free bed for every 5,000 population, the additional expense corresponding to the excess of beds based on 1:5,000 ratio shall be shouldered solely by the province and towns and cities concerned.

(d) The National Government shall set aside out of the National Treasury an amount representing the difference between the total contributions from the municipalities, cities and every province on one hand and the total cost of operating and maintaining the free general hospital beds in the whole province computed at eight (P8.00) pesos to ten (P10.00) pesos per bed per day (depending on the comparative cost of commodities and maintenance in each province, municipality or city) on the other, based on the ratio of one bed for every 5,000 population.

Sec. 3. In provinces where there are no government hospitals, or where the ratio of free beds in actual operation is below the ratio provided in Section one hereof, the funds raised thru the provisions in paragraphs (a) and (c) of Section two hereof shall be utilized for the construction of buildings and additional wards during the first years after this Act shall have taken effect if no funds have already been appropriated therefor.

Sec. 4. Funds raised thru paragraphs (a) and (c) of Section two hereof in the provinces where the ratio of free beds is better than 1:5,000 shall be used for the improvement of the existing facilities and/or the establishment of more branch hospitals.

Sec. 5. Special hospitals (National Mental Hospital, National Orthopedic Hospital, National Children's Hospital, Maternity and Children's Hospital and San Lazaro Hospital) now in operation and wholly supported by the National Government shall continue to be operated and maintained by the National Government and their total operating expenses shall be computed at eight (P8.00) to ten (P10.00) pesos per bed per day.

Sec. 6. All government hospitals shall operate with not less than ninety (90%) per centum of its bed capacity as free or charity beds.

Sec. 7. The supervision and control over all government hospitals established and operated under this Act shall be vested upon the Secretary of Health. The Secretary of Health is also hereby vested with the power to promulgate rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this Act.

Sec. 8. All Acts or parts of Acts inconsistent herewith are hereby repealed.

Sec. 9. This Act shall take upon its approval.

Approved: June 22, 1957

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