THE Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) should bear more of the costs of hospitalization, including the medical bills and doctors’ fees, incurred by patients admitted in private hospitals, Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said Sunday.
Speaker Romualdez said he wants to meet with officials of PhilHealth and the Department of Health (DoH) to talk about how to expand members’ benefits, which includes increasing the share of the latter in paying for private hospital admissions.
“Marami ang nagtatanong sa atin kung puwedeng dagdagan ang sasagutin ng Philhealth sa billing at doctors’ fees kapag private ang kinuha na k’warto o sa pay ward,” Speaker Romualdez, the leader of the 300-plus-strong House of Representatives, said.
Speaker Romualdez said that the chief complaint of patients, especially the indigent ones, is that PhilHealth is only shouldering 15% to 20% of hospital bills in hospitals and private medical institutions, especially if they are admitted in private wards.
In terms of professional fees of physicians and medical specialists, the Speaker received complains that PhilHealth only subsidizes 30% for private hospital patients.
“Hindi naman lahat na na-aadmit sa ospital ay nasa free o charity ward. Mabilis kasi maubos ang mga charity beds,” Speaker Romualdez explained, adding he wants to talk to the concerned officials to check the exact benefits being received by members confined in private hospitals.
“Hiling ng mga tao na kalahati ng bill nila sana kapag na-admit sa private ay sagutin ng Philhealth para kalahati na lang ang bayaran ng miyembro,” he added.
Dr. Jose Degrano, president of the Private Hospital Association of the Philippines (PHAP), agreed with Speaker Romualdez.
“Malaking tulong ang naiisip na ‘yan ni Speaker Romualdez sa mga tao,” Degrano said. “Karamihan ng na-aadmit sa ospital ay nasa pay ward kahit mahirap dahil madaling maubos ang hospital beds sa charity ward,” he explained.
“Mabigat din para sa kanila ang doctors’ fees” he stated.
Speaker Romualdez said that as leader of the House of Representatives, he will find a way to make this happen.
“Maghahanap tayo ng solusyon kung papaano magawan na paraan itong kahilingan ng taumbayan na hindi na dadaan sa paggawa pa ng batas dahil medyo matagal ito,” Speaker Romualdez declared.
“Definitely, we hear our constituents. Therefore, we have to do something about it,” he added.