No respect for the elderly

SPY BIZ - S.A. Maguire () - November 7, 2006 - 12:00am
Senior citizens are complaining that certain drug stores and hospitals give them a hard time when they try to avail of the 20 percent discount provided for under Republic Act 9257 or the "Expanded Senior Citizens‚ Act of 2003". According to the complainants, these establishments refuse to honor the discount when the elders use credit card, not cash, when paying for products or services. There is no provision in RA 9257 that says senior citizens are not entitled to the privilege if they use their credit cards instead of paying in cash. Under Section 4 of the bill, people over 60 are entitled to 20-percent discount for the purchase of medicines for the exclusive use of the senior as well as medical and dental services including lab fees and professional fees of attending doctors in all private hospitals and medical facilities. Complaints about establishments violating RA 9257 may be reported to the DTI hotline at 751-3330 or email at
Far from world class
This hospital in Quezon City prides itself for being "world class," but patients find it hard to share the hype being created by the owners. Doctors‚ clinics are cramped and hot, and the airconditioning is so bad that some doctors have taken to bringing electric fans in their offices to keep patients comfortable during consultations. An insider disclosed that many resident doctors have allegedly left the hospital to become nurses abroad. This has made the hospital understaffed, and even consultants are now going on duty to cope with the influx of patients particularly at the ER. As a result, these consultants are often late for their scheduled clinic hours, which makes the waiting even more agonizing especially for parents of pediatric patients. People are also complaining about the parking fees collected by this hospital even from patients confined for several days. And to think the parking area is really nothing more than a glorified empty lot that gets very muddy especially when it rains. The hospital should fix its facilities if it wants to live up to its world class tag, informants said.
Not big in Japan
A magazine writer who also happens to run his own online business had the misfortune of bringing a guest to a Japanese resto located in a very upscale mall in Makati. Though the person had been sufficiently warned about the rather slow service at the resto, his craving for sushi got the better of him. He patiently waited to be served, but imagine his dismay as the staff seemed oblivious of him and his guest – which is really impossible considering that the writer and his guest were sticking out in their stiff business suits. What’s worse, they were there during lunch on a weekday and the resto wasn’t really teeming with guests. Finally exasperated, the duo decided to leave, but not before having a word with the manager who was absolutely clueless about the unsatisfactory service by her staff. Incidentally, the Japanese resto is named after a now non-existent town that was recently merged with other towns from the Amakusa District in Kumamoto to form a new city. If the owners are not careful, their resto might just follow the fate of the town after which it has been named.
Spy tidbiz: Huli kay Luli
It’s unfortunate for the Bureau of Immigration officer to have come across First Daughter Luli Arroyo, who’s a real stickler for procedure. "Huli kay Luli," readers remarked about the erring BI officer. In fairness to Luli, she’s known to really follow rules, eschewing preferential treatment and lining up like any other ordinary citizen when she goes out of the country. Judging from the number of emails congratulating the First Daughter, it looks like she scored a lot of good points with the public. Most people have to endure red tape in a lot of government offices especially the LTO, where renewing a driver’s license can take as long as four hours especially for those not willing to transact business "under the table." In contrast, it only takes 15 minutes to renew a driver’s license in other countries. The so-called drug testing for driver’s license applicants is also a big farce, since most of the time LTO people don’t even bother to glance at the results. It would be best for GMA to have Luli report exactly the difficulty people go through just to obtain a driver’s license or other IDs from government offices.
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