Thousands of health workers have no COVID allowance yet, says group


Posted at Jun 20 2022 02:13 PM

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Hundreds of thousands of medical frontliners across the country have yet to receive their One COVID-19 Allowance, the Alliance of Health Workers (AHW) said Monday.

“Posible meron pa pong 346,000 health workers na hindi pa po nakakatanggap ngayon dito sa OCA benefits,” said AHW president Robert Mendoza. 

(It is possible that about 346,000 health workers have yet to receive their OCA benefits.)

The Department of Health requires liquidation reports before releasing succeeding tranches of the OCA benefits, said Mendoza. 

“Anong petsa na, magju-July na. E ang nabibigay palang sa ibang hospital January o February. Tapos yung iba naman meron nang March or April,” he told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo. 

(It's almost July, yet some hospitals have only received their OCA for January or February, some have their March or April OCA already.)

Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines Inc. president Dr. Jose Rene de Grano said health workers from several hospitals in Calabarzon, Northern Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao have yet to receive their OCA.

Private hospitals need to enter into a memorandum of agreement with the DOH to enable its Centers for Health Development (CHDs) to transfer funds and for full accounting of any funds previously given. 

The health department last week said its CHDs "welcome the submission of names of the private hospitals encountering difficulties so that the issues can be addressed immediately."

The DOH last month said it has disbursed some P86.5 million to 54 health facilities since January 2022, while P403 million has been allocated to 266 medical facilities and was "readily available."

"However it is pending and for issuance of check due to lack of submitted documents, especially the signed Memorandum of Agreement and liquidation report from the previously transferred funds to the health facility," it said in a statement last May 25.

Meantime, at least P639.96 million in special risk allowance has been disbursed to 234 health facilities since February. Of this figure, P581.3 million was claimed by 218 facilities, while P58.66 million for 16 facilities was unclaimed, said the health department. 

Around P80.77 million worth of Meals, Accommodation, and Transportation (MAT) allowance has been issued to 47 health facilities, of which P76.63 million was claimed by 34 facilities and P4.14 million remains unclaimed by 13 health facilities, the DOH added.
— TeleRadyo, 20 June 2022