Video courtesy of PTV
President Rodrigo Duterte wants state medical insurer PhilHealth to pay its debt to hospitals as soon as possible, Malacañang said on Thursday, following complaints from facilities treating COVID-19 sufferers.
The Philippine Hospital Association said PhilHealth owed private and public medical facilities some P20 billion in COVID-19 claims.
"Kapag hindi natin binayaran iyan, hindi pupuwedeng magpatuloy ang mga pribadong ospital na gamutin ang mga nagkakasakit sa COVID at hindi po sapat ang ating pampublikong mga ospital," said Palace spokesman Harry Roque.
(If we do not pay that, private hospitals cannot continue treating those with COVID, and our public hospitals will not suffice.)
"Panawagan po uli ng Presidente, and I’m sure si Atty. Gierran will listen to this, kinakailangan bayaran iyan sa lalong mabilis na panahon... We need to see results now," he said in a press briefing, referring to PhilHealth chief Dante Gierran.
(The President asks again, and I’m sure si Atty. Gierran will listen to this, that needs to be paid as soon as possible.)
Dr. Jose Rene De Grano, president of the Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines Inc, said delayed reimbursements would be used to cover the salaries of health care workers, medical equipment and supplies.
"Malaki ang epekto 'yan kasi siyempre ang private hospitals nagre-rely lang sa aming services, admission namin sa aming mga pasyente," he said.
(It will have a big impact because we only on our services and admission of patients.)
"Pagka nawalan na nga ng pondo, siyempre maapektuhan po 'yung pangsuweldo, pambili ng supplies, pambayad sa oxygen," he added.
(When there's no funds, it will affect the salary [of our employees], our capacity to buy supplies and pay for oxygen.)