Department of Health officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire (PNA file photo by Avito Dalan)

MANILA – The vacancy of the health secretary post in the past months did not disrupt the services provided by the Department of Health (DOH).

In a media briefing on Friday, DOH officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said she does not see any “difference from or difficulty in” performing her tasks under her current position in the agency.

“The authority provided to me has led us to continue with all the services and operations, no disruptions at all,” she said.

“What I think would just be the difference would be the appointing authority, 'yung (the) appointing authority, I don't think that would be critical at this point for us because we still have our officials intact and all are working,” she said.

She said she could easily speak with President Ferdinand R. Marcos about issues needing “clarification and additional authority”.

“Kapag kailangan ng additional backing doon sa decision na gagawin, tinatanong at sinasangguni natin sa kanila at binibigyan naman nila tayo ng guidance (We consult them when additional backing is needed on the decision to be made and they provide guidance),” she added.

While they are still in talks about the specific assignment of retired Philippine National Police chief Camilo Cascolan as undersecretary of the department, Vergeire said Cascolan is “very qualified for the job considering his credentials”.

Marcos earlier noted Cascolan would not look into health issues but would perform an “administrative audit” that would look at the functions of the department. (PNA)