Palace: Half of PhilHealth’s P930-M debt to Red Cross PH will be paid ASAP

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Malacañang said Tuesday that the government would pay at least half of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation’s () P930.9-million debt to the Philippine (PRC) “at the soonest possible time.”

President Rodrigo Duterte said Monday that the government would settle the PhilHealth debt after the PRC stopped its COVID-19 testing services chargeable to the state insurer.

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“It’s a matter really of accounting and payment. Di ko lang po masigurado pero parang tumatawad din ata tayo ng kaunti doon sa sinisingil ng PRC na wala naman daw pong problema,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said at a news conference.

“May mga papeles naman na ginagawa, but I can assure you that at least half of that will be paid at the soonest time possible.”

On Sunday, PhilHealth spokesperson Rey Baleña said that the state insurer targets to settle its obligation within the month. He added they were just awaiting the clearance from the Department of Budget and Management.

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Starting October 15, Red Cross would no longer process COVID-19 tests of those listed in the Department of Health’s expanded testing guidelines (DOH) per its memorandum no. 2020-0258-A, including overseas Filipino workers, individuals through the mega swabbing facilities and local government units, frontline health and government workers, and those arriving in airports and seaports.

Palace: Half of PhilHealth’s P930-M debt to Red Cross PH will be paid ASAP

According to Philippine Red Cross, PhilHealth needs to pay its overdue balance of P930,993,000 before they resume their service.

“Unfortunately, PhilHealth failed to meet its obligations. As a result, the PRC’s total billings to PhilHealth stand at P1,014,975,500.00 as of October 13, 2020. Of this amount, P930,993,000.00 represents overdue amounts,” it said.

PRC revealed PhilHealth’s last payment to PRC was made on September 8, but “not a single centavo has been paid since then.”

Vince Dizon, the deputy chief implementer of the Philippines’ COVID-19 action plan, said Friday that the COVID-19 testing output is expected to decrease following the PRC’s decision.
“Napakalaking bagay ang paghinto ng Red Cross. So, aasahan natin na bababa ang testing output natin dahil sa pagsara ng Red Cross dito sa mga araw na ito hangga’t hindi masettle ‘yung issue sa PhilHealth,” Dizon said.
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