PhilHealth in W. Visayas ready for UHC enactment
By Gail Momblan
Iloilo City (Philippines News Agency) — The Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) in Western Visayas is ready for the implementation of the Universal Health Care (UHC) law or Republic Act No. 11223.
As one of its preparations, PhilHealth asked the support of government information officers and media practitioners on Tuesday.
“We have gathered our media partners and information officers to give them the salient features of the law. With their help, we are positive that the information will multiply and will reach everyone in the region,” said Janet A. Monteverde, acting regional vice president of PhilHealth-6, in a press conference.
Monteverde said agencies including the Department of Health, Department of the Interior and Local Government, Philippine Statistics Authority, Department of Social Welfare and Development, among others, collaborate to deliver services to Filipinos.
The UHC mandates that every Filipino will be granted the automatic coverage by the PhilHealth and will be entitled to preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative health services.
Since the law mandates that all Filipinos cannot be denied access to healthcare when they need them, Monteverde expressed hope that the referral system in hospitals would be strengthened as the UHC law provides “service delivery networks”.
The primary health care clinics, TB DOTS (Tuberculosis Directly Observed Treatment Short Course) package provider, among others, shall be the “first line of defense against sickness”, followed by the district hospitals affiliated to the provincial government; and strategically located government hospitals in the city, Monteverde said.
“Everything that will be implemented for the first time needs a working phase,” she said, adding that PhilHealth-6 needs to work double time to orient the public on the salient points of the law.
Monteverde said patients who come forward upon the implementation of the law on March 8 will be accommodated.
She added that 98 percent of health care facilities in the region are PhilHealth-accredited.
The agency’s 2018 data also indicated that 98 percent of the 7,796,744 projected population in Western Visayas are enrolled in PhilHealth. (PNA)