Private hospitals hit delay in release of PhilHealth reimbursements

By Sheila Crisostomo, The Philippine Star

Posted at May 19 2014 09:49 AM | Updated as of May 19 2014 05:49 PM

MANILA - The Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines Inc. (PHAPi) is not likely to honor the Philippine Health Insurance membership of patients to protest the delayed release of reimbursements.

PHAPi president Rustico Jimenez said PhilHealth is again taking at least six months to pay private hospitals for their services to PhilHealth members and this will soon affect hospital operations.

“Hospitals are restless now because they have not been paid for at least six months. They also have to pay their bills, like for the water and (electricity) and they are running out of funds,” he said.

He said the reason given to PHAPi for the delayed reimbursements is the ongoing computerization of PhilHealth.

“PhilHealth is mismanaged and they have the guts to give big bonuses to themselves while they cannot pay us,” he added.

He said that because of the delayed reimbursement, PHAPi members – around 600 hospitals nationwide – are seriously considering not to honor the PhilHealth membership of patients.

“By (this) week, private hospitals will accept PhilHealth patients but they will not remove the PhilHealth part (in their bills) to have money to pay the salaries of employees and suppliers,” he added.

This means patients will have to shell out for the PhilHealth’s share in their hospital bills and then apply for reimbursement directly to PhilHealth.

“We are doing this so that hospitals will not close and still serve the patients,” Jimenez said.