DOH signs Universal Health Care implementing rules

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 10 2019 04:06 PM

MANILA - Health Secretary Francisco Duque on Thursday led the signing of the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the Universal Health Care Act.

This will pave the way for the implementation of the law, signed last February, that would provide health care coverage for all Filipinos. 

Under the law, all Filipinos will be assigned to a primary care provider or a health worker who shall be the first contact of health care. They will deliver free essential health services and will guide patients through different health care facilities.

All Filipinos will also be automatic members of PhilHealth as direct or indirect contributors, and shall be eligible to no-balance billing once admitted to basic or ward accommodations in hospitals. 

Availability of basic ward accommodation in facilities will be ensured through prescribed basic private bed rations: 90:10 for public health facilities; 70:30 for public specialty health facilities, and a minimum of 10:90 for private health facilities.

”Parang sumakay ka ng eroplano kung economy, sagot ng PhilHealth ang ticket. Kung gusto mo mag-business class, 'di na kakayanin ng PhilHealth," Duque said.

Duque, however, said the expanded benefits would mean an increase in PhilHealth premiums in increments of .25 percent as the agency is targeting to cover 98 percent of the population.

PhilHealth President Ricardo "Dick" Morales, meantime, assured the public that the agency could still be trusted with money, following the ghost claims scandal.

“We’re doing everything to keep your money safe," he said.

Health Undersecretary Mario Villaverde, chairperson of the sub-task force that wrote the IRR, said the rules went through a series of consultations in Metro Manila, North Luzon, South Luzon, Northern Mindanao, Southern Mindanao, and Visayas.