Health facility ordered to explain pricey COVID-19 tests

Kristine Sabillo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 14 2020 10:36 AM

Video courtesy of the Department of Health

MANILA — The Department of Health on Monday said it is looking into a health facility’s violation of the set price range for COVID-19 swab tests.

“Meron tayong nakita na isang facility na non-compliant. Tayo ay nagpadala na ng ating letter for them to explain,” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said when asked during a virtual briefing about the implementation of the price range for polymerase chain reaction tests.

(We saw one facility that was non-compliant. We sent them a letter for them to explain.)

Vergeire explained that is part of their existing monitoring process under the Health Facilities and Services Regulatory Bureau.

“Inaantay natin 'yung response nila kung ano ang sagot nila - if it is valid…or if they should be penalized,” she added.

(We are still waiting for their response if it is valid…or if they should be penalized.)

She did not say if the facility is a laboratory or a hospital.

Under the joint administrative order of the DOH and the Department of Trade and Industry, a facility that violates the prescribed price range of P4,500 to P5,000 for the tests may face suspension and fines. 

For a first offense it’s a 15-day suspension and a fine of P20,000. For a 2nd offense, it’s a 30-day suspension and fine of P30,000. For the 3rd offense, the government will revoke the testing facility’s license to operate.