Commission on Health Care was founded in 1986. His Excellency, Archbishop Diosdado A. Talamayan was unanimously elected Chairman of the Commission, a position he holds up to the present.
The inspiration for this
Commission stems from Christ's own admonition to "go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame" (Luke 14:21).
Following the Lord's
injunction, and in accord with a decree of the Second Plenary Council of the Philippines which prescribes pastoral care for the sick, the aged and the disabled, the Commission tasks itself with an animation of Christ's
example to love the poorest of the poor, the rejected, those deprived of normal bodily functions, and those who, because of these, have become outcasts of society.
In 1989, barely three years after its inception, the
Commission founded Catholic Deaf Care, an entity meant to look into the needs of all deaf people in the country, working primarily through the dioceses and parishes. In 1995 the Commission founded the Catholic
Handicapped Development, Inc. to work out financial supervision and support for the handicapped as well as other projects of the Commission.
Among its more visible activities is the promotion of the sign language
in Eucharistic celebrations and its involvement in the celebration of the World Day of the Sick
on February 11 each year. It also institutes gatherings, or small congresses, for pastoral health care coordinators, Hansenites, and handicapped in general, and the deaf in particular. In these activities it collaborates with other organizations that work towards the same goals.
A task of utmost importance to the Commission is the building up of public awareness and involvement for the handicapped. Besides helping the handicapped directly and physically, the Commission is involved in a
continuous campaign to inform and bring about an awareness for those who are handicapped.