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PhilHealth chief Morales to go on medical leave next week

/ 09:06 AM August 12, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) president and chief executive officer Ricardo Morales will take a medical leave “next week” amid ongoing investigations on the alleged irregularities in the state insurance firm.

In an interview with ABS-CBN’s Teleradyo, Morales said his doctor told him that he should take leave if he wants to get well from his medical condition.

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“Matigas ang ulo ko eh pero sinusunod ko na ang payo ng aking doktor, at sinabi niya na kung gusto kong gumaling I have to take a leave. So next week maglileave ako,” he said.

(I am hard-headed but now I am following the advice of the doctor. He said I should take a leave if I want to get well. So next week I will file a leave.)

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“Matagal nang suffering ang pamilya ko. Naaawa na ako sa kanila so pagbibigyan ko sila,” he also said.

(My family has long been suffering. I took pity on them so I will grant their request.)

Explaining his supposed hard-headedness in heeding the advice of his doctor, Morales, a retired military general, said: “Sundalo kasi ako eh. Alam mo, ang sundalo kahit na sugatan ay pipilitin tapusin ‘yung mission.”

(I am a soldier. You know, a soldier will try to finish the mission even if he is already wounded.)

In an interview with CNN Philippines on Monday, Morales said he had “relayed his intentions” to take a medical leave after it was revealed that he was undergoing treatment for lymphoma or cancer of the lymph nodes. In that interview, he said the request was still up for approval by his superiors.

“I have already relayed to my bosses my intentions, and it’s up to them to decide. My fate is in their hands. Medical leave. But they still haven’t decided, so I’m still awaiting,” the PhilHealth chief said earlier.

During an earlier Senate hearing, former PhilHealth anti-fraud officer Thorrsson Montes Keith said about P15 billion of funds from PhilHealth went to a syndicate in the state insurer in 2019 alone. Morales had since denied this claim.

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TAGS: corruption, medical condition, Philhealth, Ricardo Morales
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