Budget woes limit reach of UHC law
MANILA, Philippines — The government’s universal health care (UHC) program won’t exactly be universal in 2020 due to budgetary restraints and lack of preparedness, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III admitted to lawmakers on Wednesday.
There “cannot be a national rollout” of the much-touted health insurance program of the Duterte administration, said Duque, who appeared at the House of Representatives to defend his agency’s P160-billion budget.
Instead, Duque said the Department of Health had identified certain provinces that would serve as models for the implementation of the five components of UHC—service delivery, health regulation, health care financing, governance and performance accountability, and health systems development.
He did not identify the provinces chosen for pilot implementation, which he said would be the convergence points for integration.
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