PhilHealth taps PPP for universal health care
() - September 25, 2011 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) recently launched its public-private partnership (PPP) schemes with some of the biggest names in the business sector, in support of the Department of Health (DOH) agenda of Kalusugan Pangkalahatan or Universal Health Care.

Kalusugan Pangkalahatan, the health reform agenda of the DOH, aims to provide financial risk protection for all Filipinos, especially the poor, by ensuring universal PhilHealth coverage and improving the benefits of PhilHealth.

The PPP initiatives are designed to help PhilHealth encourage more and more people to become members and to assist PhilHealth in improving its services for its members. All of these will be at no cost to PhilHealth.

“The National Health Insurance Law mandates that each and everyone – rich or poor – must be members of PhilHealth. That is why we are hell bent on achieving universal coverage in three years,” Health Secretary Enrique Ona said.

Implementation started in Metro Manila on Sept. 12, Luzon on Sept. 19, Visayas on Sept. 26, and Mindanao on Oct. 3.

The SM mall chain and CIS Bayad Centers will provide more than 1,300 registration sites for those who wish to be PhilHealth members. Also, Globe and Smart telecommunications will provide marketing support to inform the public about PhilHealth offerings and benefits. In cooperation with e-soluzione and 1abx, the telecom giants will allow users to transact with PhilHealth through their mobile phones.

“We want to encourage all Filipinos, especially the informal sector, to enroll in PhilHealth,” said COO/EVP Alexander Padilla, who started this initiative.

Through this PPP initiative, all PhilHealth members will now be entitled to discounts for medicine and other health services. Watsons Pharmacy will provide discounts on medicine and cosmetic product purchases, while Rose Pharmacy and SouthStar Drug will have discounts for their unbranded generic drugs.

Qualifirst, a subsidiary of United Lab, will give 50-60 percent discounts for its generic medicine. Likewise, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) will offer a substantial discount for their flu vaccines, while PQ Health Shield will provide a 20 percent discount on all vaccines given in their outlets. Other discounts will be given by Fresenius Medical Care for its hemodialysis services and Vivian Sarabia Opticals who will offer free eye examination and a 20 percent discount on frames and lenses.

?All Cards has committed to assist PhilHealth in providing the new and better quality PhilHealth ID card, which will be made of PVC and shall have a magnetic stripe. Unilab will be shouldering the card cost of senior citizens.

“The support of the private sector is critical in the pursuit of our objectives. Government cannot do it alone. We need the support of all our partners,” said Ona as he called for more private sector support for Kalusugan Pangkalahatan.

ALEXANDER PADILLA ALL CARDS BAYAD CENTERS DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH FRESENIUS MEDICAL CARE GLOBE AND SMART HEALTH HEALTH SECRETARY ENRIQUE ONA HEALTH SHIELD KALUSUGAN PANGKALAHATAN PHILHEALTH
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