Philhealth: Funds enough for 2020 even amid pandemic

assured the public that its funds are sufficient to sustain operations for 2020 amid the coronavirus pandemic, even its chief suggested delaying the Universal Health Care (UHC) Law implementation, Monday.

Philippine Health Insurance Corporation president and chief executive officer Ricardo Morales said the public does not need to worry even if there have been higher expenses allotted to the COVID-19 patients.

“Yes, we have money. We will be fine for the year 2020 and then maybe up to the middle of next year, so there’s nothing to worry about,” Morales said during the Laging Handa virtual briefing.

Morales said the state insurer has P130 billion reserve for 2020. Of that number, an estimated P40 billion would be for COVID-19. But as of end-April, PhilHealth has paid out P52.5 billion.

“Sa mga kababayan natin, wala hong binabawas na serbisyo ang PhilHealth. Patuloy pa rin ho ang lebel ng serbisyo na binigay ng PhilHealth sa lumipas na taon at sa ngayon,” he said.

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Philhealth: Funds enough for 2020 even amid pandemic

Just last week, Morales said Philhealth services and benefits packages would be halted for the next four days due to deficiencies in the agency’s response to coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

The state insurer estimated to lose P100 billion by 2024 due to lower collections, according to Philhealth president Ricardo Morales.

The impending suspension will also affect those who complete Philhealth payments. It is also at risk today if there is sufficient funding for the implementation of the universal healthcare law.

Under the Universal Health Care Law, all Filipinos are covered by Philhealth. However, it has set a case rate package that determines the maximum amount the state insurer could shoulder for a particular illness. The patient will have to pay for the remaining balance through his own money or personal health insurance.

“Lahat ho tayo entitled to health care, kesa nagbabayad tayo ng premium or hindi. Additionally, commitment ng PhilHealth na aalagaan at babantayan ang inyong binabayaran ng premium,” Morales said.

“Hindi ho natin pababayaan na mawawala ito sa walang kwentang gastos. Iingatan ho natin ang inyong pera. ‘Wag ho kayong mag-alala, ‘yan po ang commitment ng PhilHealth,” he added.

“Noong pumasok ako dito, ‘yung issue na ‘yan was already in existence lalo na ‘yang P154 billion na nawawala daw na pondo,” Morales said during the same briefing