Manila gov’t launches probe on illegal fees charged to patients in city hospitals
MANILA, Philippines — The Manila City government will investigate reports that doctors and other medical staff at the six city-owned hospitals in Manila are charging fees for the services and procedures they offer, even to patients entitled to free or discounted services.
Vice Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso said that the city council would schedule public hearings after receiving numerous reports on the matter.
“The council has approved a resolution investigating the six hospitals of Manila on the issue that doctors and nurses are charging laboratory, professional and other fees [in violation of] our policy that residents of Manila are exempted from them,” Domagoso added.
The six hospitals are Ospital ng Sampaloc, Gat Andres Bonifacio Hospital, Jose Abad Santos Hospital, Ospital ng Maynila, Santa Ana Hospital and the Ospital ng Tondo.
Domagoso is eyeing about 30 to 50 medical staff workers at the six hospitals who allegedly charge fees.
“Mayor Joseph Estrada retained all the hospital staff when he took office. However, some nurses and doctors are engaging in [dishonest practices]. To damage the reputation of the mayor, they charge laboratory and professional fees from patients [entitled to] free or discounted healthcare,” he said.
“We want to put an end to this so we are [conducting an investigation]. If we find evidence against them, we will file administrative charges which could result in their dismissal,” Domagoso added.
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