Patient billed P16,000 by Capitol hospital
Liv G. Campo (The Freeman) - October 5, 2015 - 10:00am

CEBU, Philippines - A 73-year-old patient was billed P16,000 by the Balamban Provincial Hospital for a four-day confinement because of pneumonia and has not been discharged until the patient is able to settle his financial obligation.

Belen Gabito complained yesterday to the members of the Cebu Provincial Board during the public consultation held in Balamban where the provincial legislative body held its out-of-town session.

Gabito said her father, Ronolfo, had been confined at the Balamban Provincial Hospital for pneumonia. He was supposed to be discharged on Friday but was allegedly not released by the hospital management until they are able to pay the P16,000 bill.

Provincial health officer Cynthia Genosolango said the amount only serves as deposit and will be returned to the patient once he is able to present his PhilHealth card.

Genosolango said PhilHealth members are absolutely free of hospitalization in provincial hospitals. Balamban Provincial Hospital is among the 16 hospitals run by the provincial government.

“Kung PhilHealth member ta, wa na tay bayranan. It all boils down to one simple thing: i-enroll sa PhilHealth,” said Genosolango.

Provincial Board Member Alex Binghay asked the hospital to produce a breakdown of the charges why it reached P16,000. Binghay said it should be in an official billing statement and not just on a tiny piece of paper with the supposed amount to be paid on it.

Genosolango explained that the bill reached P16,000 because the patient’s medicine were expensive. The provincial health officer promised to return the entire amount to Gabito as soon as he has already his PhilHealth card.

She also promised to discharge the patient as soon the attending physician gives the clearance.

Genosolango said all senior citizens have free PhilHealth coverage. They only need to register at their respective senior citizens’ affairs office.

The daughter, however, admitted that her father was not covered with PhilHealth because she failed to enroll him.

Vice Governor Agnes Magpale told the personnel of Balamban Provincial Hospital and all those involved in public health care to explain to the patients their rights and privileges.

“Naproblema pa na sila unsay ibayad sa hospital, kay nasakit, way ipalit og tambal... Atong i-explain ang tanan. (In public service), there is no room for arrogance,” Magpale said.  (FREEMAN)

BALAMBAN PROVINCIAL HOSPITAL BELEN GABITO CEBU PROVINCIAL BOARD CYNTHIA GENOSOLANGO GABITO GENOSOLANGO HOSPITAL PHILHEALTH PROVINCIAL PROVINCIAL BOARD MEMBER ALEX BINGHAY VICE GOVERNOR AGNES MAGPALE
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