MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) said that Filipinos are still paying a “significant amount” of their hospital bills despite the extended healthcare coverage under the Universal Health Care (UHC) law.
In the hearing held by the Senate committee on government corporations, PhilHealth officer-in-charge Eli Dino Santos said that Filipinos who are hospitalized still pay 34% to 44.7% of their hospital bills.
Santos referred to the 2019 study by PhilHealth.
He said, a typical patient pays 34% of his hospital bill.
Santos only means “for every P1 spending, the out of pocket is 34 centavos.”
“There’s also a report from the PSA (Philippine Statistics Authority)-Philippine National Health Accounts, our out-of-pocket is still at 44.7% based on our current health expenditure,” wika nito.
Republic Act No. 11223 or the “Universal Health Care (UHC) Law” signed by President Rodrigo Duterte on February 20, 2019 means a massive reform in the health sector in the Philippines.
This law states that all Filipinos are automatically members of the National Health Insurance Program or NHIP. Through this “immediate eligibility” Filipinos will have access to total health services. This includes preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative, and palliative care. Services such as free consultation, laboratory tests and diagnostic services are also stated here.
Every Filipino can choose their health care provider that they can go to for consultation and treatment. Meanwhile, there is no need to present the PhilHealth ID to avail these benefits.
On the other hand, Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, chairman of the panel, said that “based on OCTA Research survey, 57% say they’re not members of PhilHealth. Why? Because they’re being asked to present an ID.”
According to the senator, there are still some hospitals that require a PhilHealth ID as proof of coverage.
As for Santos, hospitals that require PhilHealth IDs are only done by 90% of Filipinos registered in the PhilHealth system. Chris Joseph
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