Members can now avail of new health care benefits — PhilHealth

September 26, 2012 9:05 pm 

LUCENA CITY, Quezon, Sept. 26 –- Here’s good news to tens of million members of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) all over the country.

PhilHealth Calabarzon regional vice president for field operations Alberto C. Manduriao said that PhilHealth president and chief executive officer Eduardo P. Banzon officially announced here last Sept. 24 the establishment of the new PhilHealth Care Benefit 1 Package that gives financial protection to all members nationwide. The PCB 1 package is the first step towards achieving the government’s Universal Health Care (UHC) Program for its citizens, he said.

Manduriao said that Banzon, in his announcement, said that the new benefits under the PCB 1 package involving quality health services will be availed off initially by members that undergo medication in public hospitals and clinics all over the country.

Under the new benefits package, a public health facility provides on its own the needed health care services to members registered with PhilHealth, he said.

Included as part the primary health benefits under PCB 1 Package are consultations, monitoring of high blood pressure, health promotions like breastfeeding education, and counseling on lifestyle modification and smoking.

Medicines will be provided free for ordinary ailments such as asthma and acute gastroenteritis (AGE) without or with mild dehydration, upper respiratory tract infection, pneumonia and urinary tract infection, Manduriao said.

He added that diagnostic services like complete blood count, urinalysis, sputum microscopy, fasting, blood sugar, lipid profile and chest x-ray also form part of the package.

The PhilHealth, however, said that the PCB 1 Package will be availed off first by members under the Sponsored Program (SP), Organized Groups (OGs), and Overseas Workers Program (OWP) and their qualified beneficiaries, but assured it will not take long that all Philhealth members listed under other programs will also benefit from the new program.<p<Manduriao said that Banzon told Quezonians and members in other provinces that to avail of the new benefits provided under PCB 1 package, members of sponsored programs (SPs) members are enjoined to undergo medication in rural health units, health centers and public health facilities and outpatient departments (OPDs) in public hospitals and clinics nearest their homes.

On the other hand, members of organized groups (OG) and overseas workers program (OWP) can choose the PCB 1 providers from the list of government hospitals and clinics that provide health services under the PCB 1 package.

Officials said that starting April 1, 2012, PhilHealth called on all members of SP in their respective PCB providers such rural health units, HCs and OPDs of public hospitals nationwide to ensure availing of the new benefit being afforded by PhilHealth.<Officials added that members of SP can also enrol with accredited providers found in their localities so they can already avail of the new benefits by simply showing their valid PhilHealth ID cards.

According to Manduriao, members need not pay any amount to avail of the new health care benefits. However, he explained that availment by SP members of outpatient benefits should be covered by the validity period stated in ID cards issued by PhilHealth.

For organized group (OG) members, they should have at least three months of uninterrupted payment of monthly amortization to entitle them to avail of the new benefits when hospitalized. Members under the overseas workers program (OWP) can avail of said benefits if they have paid at least one year of their monthly amortization to the system.

PhilHealth officials said they are strengthening their commitment to provide financial protection to all its members, especially in times of need, pointing out that “providing benefits under the PCB 1 Package is the first step towards this direction." (PNA)

LAM/FJMB/DMY

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