Some PhilHealth execs allegedly pocketed P15B: former anti-fraud official

Katrina Domingo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 04 2020 02:53 PM | Updated as of Aug 04 2020 06:05 PM

MANILA - Some Philippine Health Insurance Corp (PhilHealth) officials allegedly pocketed around P15 billion in funds through various rackets in the state-run health insurance firm, the agency's resigned anti-fraud official said Tuesday.

"Naniniwala po ako na ang perang winaldas at ninakaw ay humigit kumulang ₱15 billion," Thorrson Montes Keith told senators who were investigating alleged irregularities in the agency.

Keith did not mention particular officials, but noted that overseas Filipino workers are being unfairly charged as they also shoulder the supposed share of employers.

Several items for the agency's IT department are also overpriced by millions, he alleged.

This can be considered as the "crime of the year," Keith said.

"Naniniwala po ako na ang dahilan kung bakit hindi natatapos ang korapsyon sa PhilHealth at naging kultura na po ito ay dahil sa pagtatalaga ng mga sindikato o mafia ng kanilang kasamahan, kasabwat o kapwa sindikato sa mga matataas na posisyon na nakakatulong sa kanilang ilegal operasyon," he said.

(I believe that the culture of corruption continues in PhilHealth because the mafia or syndicates in the agency continue to appoint their members in high positions, which helps their illegal operations.)

Keith resigned from his post citing massive corrupt practices in the agency mandated to shoulder the COVID-19 tests and other medical bills of Filipinos.

PhilHealth President Ricardo Morales, who was also present in the said Senate investigation, did not comment on Keith's allegations.