MANILA - Alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles may be discharged from the Ospital ng Makati (OsMak) even if she has not yet settled her bills, the hospital clarified on Thursday.
In a statement, the OsMak said Napoles was issued her discharge orders on Tuesday, and the Philippine National Police (PNP) was "verbally informed to facilitate the necessary preparations."
PNP spokesperson Chief Supt. Theodore Sindac on Wednesday said the discharge order for Napoles has yet to be issued since she has not yet settled the amount of P97.116.43.
Sindac cited this as the reason why Napoles' transfer back to Fort Sto. Domingo in Laguna has been stalled.
However, the OsMak, where Napoles underwent an operation to remove the tumor in her uterus, clarified that it "does not detain patients who cannot settle their bills."
It also noted that Napoles has so far not officially manifested that she cannot pay her hospital bills.
Financially-constrained patients are offered options, including the execution of a promissory note in accordance with the Republic Act 9439 or Anti-Detention of Patient Act, it said.
"In effect, the hospital is ready to formally discharge Mrs. Napoles subject to the stipulations of a court order," the OsMak said.
The Napoles camp, however, is seeking an extended stay in OsMak, saying she needs to undergo more tests.
The motion will be heard on May 14.
Absent a resolution on the matter, her lawyers asked that her transfer to Fort Sto. Domingo be held in abeyance.