Friday, March 11, 2016

Philhealth much stronger now than in previous years -- Dorotan, Gov. Salceda
By Nancy Ibo Mediavillo

LEGAZPI CITY, March 11 (PNA) -- The Philippine Health Insurance Corp. is much stronger now than in the previous years, PhilHealth Board Member Eddie Dorotan said.

Dorotan clarified that it is not true that the health insurance company might become non-operational soon due to lack of funds.

In fact, he said, PhilHealth is very much financially sound.

The PhilHealth official said the funding reserves of the company, which stands at Php128-Php130 billion at present, could last up to two years, based on the provision of the law.

Although for the sake of transparency, Dorotan said, the benefit-providing company spent Php97 billion in terms of medical assistance to the poor members of the society like the senior citizens and members of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program vis-a-vis its Php96-billion funds last year, the standby reserves make the company very much solid and sound.

He stressed that PhilHealth will further enhance its collection and campaign against graft and corruption in line with the Daang Matuwid policy of President Benigno C. Aquino III.

The former mayor of Irosin, Sorsogon, who has been known for his fight against corruption, cited fraudulent claims and ghost patients as anomalous transactions being done against PhilHealth.

In this connection, he said, PhilHealth has filed cases against those involved who have been meted out appropriate sentences and penalties.

Dorotan said the company has a 92-percent coverage of intended beneficiaries and it aims to achieve the universal health coverage soonest.

He said the remaining small percentage not covered comprises informal settlers.

Dorotan said the PhilHealth has further widened the coverage of its services as it has already included those who have heart diseases, dialysis and other health packages.

In addition, he disclosed, some PhilHealth members no longer pay but enjoy no-balance billing once they are confined in many hospitals all over the Philippines.

Governor Joey Sarte Salceda agreed with the disclosures of Dorotan, saying PhilHealth is much stronger today than it had been in the previous years owing to its fundamental structure.

Salceda said that at present, PhilHealth has an additional compulsory market or predictable source of funding -- the 80-percent collection of sin tax -- aside from the regular contributions of its members from the private and public sectors.

He stressed that the services being given by PhilHealth quadrupled because from the previous expenditures of Php26 billion, it spent Php97 billion last year for the benefit of its members. (PNA) LAP/FGS/NIM/CBD