A HOUSE leader has proposed structural reforms for the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to help its newly appointed head, former National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Director Dante Gierran address longstanding issues of corruption and mismanagement in the state health insurance system.
In a 33-page report on the state health insurance system, which Albay Rep. Joey Sarte Salceda, who chairs the House committee on ways and means, calls a “system-audit” of PhilHealth, he identified four areas for reform in PhilHealth.
Salceda said these areas are: reserve fund management, collections, claims and benefits, and governance as he disproved claims that PhilHealth is bound to lose P90 billion this year due to declining premiums and increasing claims.
“PhilHealth is definitely bound to lose money this year. But our findings, based on their own financial reports, show these supposedly actuarial projections to be overstated. They were in the red just by P5.99 billion for the first half of 2020, an acceptable loss given the circumstance,” Salceda said, referring to claims made by PhilHealth executives during a Senate hearing on the health insurer’s finances.
Health Sec. Francisco Duque III vowed to clear his name and prove that allegations against him over alleged misuse of funds under the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation’s (PhilHealth) emergency cash advance measure are wrong.
Duque said he would face the Senate Committee of the Whole where Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III, chair of the committee, reported out the findings to file charges against him, recently resigned PhilHealth chief Ricardo Morales, as well as several top-ranking officials, on the matter
“As I stated a week ago, I will cooperate with any inquiry on the matter by the concerned government agencies. I intend to clear my name,” said Duque.
“I was only informed of the sponsorship speech of Senate President Tito Sotto on the findings of the Committee on the Whole on PhilHealth. This is not the best of times for the Executive to have a difference with the Legislative branch, but I went to the Senate to explain what happened on issues I have personal knowledge of,” Duque stressed.
Duque pointed out that he never participated in any of the deliberation on IRM and did not sign the resolution on the matter.
“It is sad that I was impleaded on the IRM when I was not in fact involved in the deliberation and did not sign the said resolution while those who took part in the deliberation and signed were not included,” said Duque.