Been putting off your PWD ID application? Get one as soon as you can. Whether your medical condition is visible or not, you’ll benefit a lot from having a PWD ID. It’s your proof of your entitlement as a PWD, so you can get discounts that can greatly help in easing your medical expenses and other types of purchases.
So don’t delay your ID application. Here’s what you need to know about how to get a PWD ID in the Philippines.
What is PWD ID?
The PWD ID is the standard identification card for persons with disability (PWDs) in the Philippines. It can be used to avail of PWD benefits as mandated by the law.
This ID card is valid for three years and free of charge when issued for the first time. There’s a minimal fee for PWD ID renewal due to expiration, damage, or loss of card.
Who Can Get a PWD ID?
Any Filipino with a permanent disability can apply for a PWD ID. Republic Act 10754 defines persons with disability as those with a long-term physical, mental, intellectual, or sensory impairments that interfere with their interactions in society.
The Department of Health (DOH) considers the following types of disabilities as eligible for a PWD ID:
- Psychosocial disability “ Includes bipolar disorder, depression, ADHD, schizophrenia, epilepsy, and other long-term and recurring mental or behavioral issues
- Disability resulting from a chronic illness “ Includes orthopaedic disability due to cancer, blindness due to diabetes, and other disabilities due to a chronic disease
- Learning disability “ Includes processing problems that hinder learning math, reading, writing, and other basic skills
- Mental/Intellectual disability
- Visual disability “ Simple poor eyesight doesn’t automatically qualify a person for a PWD ID unless the visual impairment can’t be corrected.
- Orthopedic (Musculoskeletal) disability “ Includes people with dwarfism and amputated hands or feet.
- Hearing disability
- Speech impairment
- Multiple disabilities
What Benefits Can PWDs Get?
Instagram photo by @joross69
PWDs in the Philippines enjoy certain discounts and privileges under RA 10754. To avail of these benefits, the PWD ID must be presented. In the absence of this particular ID, those with an apparent disability may present their passport to get PWD benefits.
Here are the different benefits you can get as a PWD:
20% Discount and Value Added Tax (VAT) Exemption
PWDs are entitled to a 20% discount and exempted from paying VAT when buying certain products and services nationwide, which include the following categories:
- Room accommodations in lodging establishments, including dormitories for students
- Cinemas, theaters, and other recreational centers
- Medicines and food for special medical purposes
- Medical and dental services, including professional fees, diagnostic, and laboratory fees
- Fares for domestic air and sea travel
- Fares for land transportation, including jeeps, buses, taxis, trains, and TNVS/ride-hailing services
- Funeral and burial services for the death of a PWD
Note that PWDs can’t get double discounts. If a particular service is on a promotional discount, PWDs can avail of either the 20% PWD discount or the establishment’s offered discount, whichever is higher.
Likewise, if you’re both a PWD and senior citizen, you can use either your senior citizen ID or PWD ID to avail of the 20% discount.
5% Discount on Basic Necessities and Prime Commodities
The law also grants a 5% discount to PWDs in the Philippines on top of the mandatory 20% discount and VAT exemption. The special discount applies to purchase of products such as rice, meat, fresh fruits, drinking water, sugar, construction materials, and other commodities as determined by the Department of Agriculture and Department of Trade and Industry.
To qualify for the 5% discount, the total purchase should not be more than PHP 1,300 per week. Any unused amount must not be carried over to the next week.
A PWD who’s also a senior citizen may avail of the discount from only one category.
Mandatory Coverage Under SSS/GSIS, PhilHealth, and Pag-IBIG
Membership with the Social Security System (SSS)/Government Service Insurance System, (GSIS), PhilHealth, and Pag-IBIG Fund is compulsory for PWD workers in the Philippines. This means all working PWDs are entitled to the same benefits from these government agencies as other members.
- Employer’s Guide to Government-Mandated Employee Benefits in the Philippines
- Guide to Registering New Employees with BIR, SSS, Pag-IBIG, and PhilHealth
Scholarships, educational grants, subsidies, allowances, and other forms of financial support are available to PWDs in the Philippines. These privileges apply to elementary, high school, college, post-graduate, vocational, or technical education in public and private schools.
Express Lanes for PWDs
PWDs are a priority in all commercial and government transactions in the Philippines. The law requires establishments to create express lanes for PWDs.
City-Specific PWD Benefits
Aside from the PWD benefits implemented on a national level, some cities provide their PWD residents with additional privileges, such as the following:
- Free movie admission in Makati, Quezon City, Baguio (SM Cinemas only), Bacoor, Angeles City, San Fernando, etc.
- Cash gifts/financial assistance in Makati, Cebu City, etc.
- Free parking in Muntinlupa, Cebu City, entire Cavite, etc.
- Discounted parking in select areas of Quezon City, Manila, Makati, San Juan, Taguig, etc.
- Free birthday cake in Makati
How to Get a PWD ID
Instagram photo by @tetcha_figuerres
The exact procedure varies per city or municipality, but here are the general guidelines for PWD ID application.
Prepare the PWD ID Requirements
- Completed PWD ID application form available at any of the following sites:
- National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA) or its regional counterpart
- Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) offices
- Participating organizations with memorandums of agreement with the DOH
- Office of the Mayor
- Office of the Barangay Captain
- PWD ID application form from the DOH website
- DOH Online Registration System
- Two 1×1 ID photos with name and signature at the back (Some city/municipal halls require two 2×2 ID pictures.)
- Barangay clearance, voter’s ID, or any valid government-issued ID
- Latest medical certificate or clinical abstract that confirms disability condition from licensed private or government clinic, or hospital-based medical professional
You have to attach your ID pictures and medical certificate/abstract to the accomplished application form.
File Your PWD ID Application
Bring all the PWD ID requirements and submit them to any of the following offices, whichever is applicable:
- Persons with Disability Affairs Office (PDAO) of the city hall or municipal hall where you live
- City/Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office
- City or Municipal Health Office or its satellite offices
- Office of the Mayor
- Office of the Barangay Captain
- NCDA office (for urgent cases)
Your information and documents will be checked and verified. Once your medical condition or disability is confirmed, youâ€™ll be assigned a PWD ID number.
The next step is encoding your personal information. If you have confidential data regarding your medical condition, an officer will conduct a private interview with you.
Lastly, claim your PWD ID card along with purchase booklets that youâ€™ll use each time you avail of a PWD benefit.
Not all PWD ID applications get approved. The government is strict when it comes to evaluating applicants, as some people tend to abuse the system by faking their disability or using a fake ID to enjoy PWD discounts and privileges. This is why disability has to be confirmed first before an applicant is issued a PWD ID.
If your PWD ID application is declined, it may be caused by issues regarding the documents you submitted. The registration officer will let you know about the deficiency in your PWD ID application. You can apply again when you submit the complete PWD ID requirements.