LAGUNA—As part of the Katulong at Gabay sa Manggagawang may Kapansanan (KaGabay) Program, the Employees’ Compensation Commission (ECC) sponsored the medical expenses of Devie Noel Aquino’s bone grafting operation held on July 26, 2019 at the Calamba Medical Center.

Aquino, a quality assurance laboratory technician in Union Galvasteel Corporation was injured when a slitted coil with an estimated weight of 300 kgs fell and hit his left foot and leg while he was walking in the area on March 23, 2019. The accident caused him open wound and leg fracture which needed several operations.

The Union Galvasteel Corporation shouldered his three (3) initial medical operations and provided him with basic needs while he was still recuperating. Due to their company nurse’s awareness about the EC program, Mary Joy Bona coordinated and sought for ECC’s further assistance.

The partnership on the medical assistance was the first successful initiative in the region under the KaGabay Program. ECC approved the Union Galvasteel Corporation’s request for medical operation and the presentation of the return to work or disability management plan for Aquino.

In exchange of the approved return-to-work plan, ECC funded the total operation cost of Php 86,927.27 including the professional fee, anesthesia, room for 5-days confinement, medicine and the implant.

Aquino has successfully returned to work on August 22, 2019 as an encoder. He said,

“Ako’y lubos na nagpapasalamat sa ECC at sa company ko dahil hindi nila ako pinapabayaan. Maraming marami pong salamat.”

KaGabay Program aims to provide rehabilitation assistance to persons with work-related disabilities (PWRDs). It also targets to work hand-in-hand with employers in providing PWRDs with employment despite the disability they had at work.

ECC Executive Director Stella Zipagan-Banawis extended her support to Aquino. “We are happy that we became instrumental to Aquino’s successful operation and re-integration to the workforce. This is what ECC is all about, not only are we here to help them financially, but also bring back their functions to become active members of our workforce once again,” said Banawis.

Reporting by Ruby Ann Fajardo, Information Officer II, REU4A