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Orphans, abused children to get PhilHealth coverage

By: - Reporter / @mj_uyINQ
/ 03:52 PM February 20, 2016

Filipino children in orphanages and child-caring services run by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) will now get to enjoy insurance coverage as part of the government’s universal health care program, according to the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth).

The state insurance firm signed a memorandum of agreement with DSWD yesterday during the celebration of its 21st anniversary, which will pave the way for the enrollment and coverage of orphans, abandoned, surrendered, neglected and abused children.

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The agreement also covered children in conflict with the law and children with special needs who are under the care of social welfare institutions run or accredited by the DSWD.

“Normally, they are not covered by PhilHealth because they have no known parents and because they are below 21,” noted PhilHealth president Alex Padilla at a press briefing that followed after the anniversary celebration in Pasig City.

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Padilla explained that under the agreement, the payment of one yearly premium-at P2,400, will cover three children. The payment will be shouldered by the DSWD.

“The institution taking care of the children will act as the parent. They will be the one who will certify if a child is really an orphan and is registered with the institution,” said Padilla, describing the agreement as a new innovation to achieve the universal health care.

READ: Wider PhilHealth coverage sought

Upon initial roll out, almost 3,000 children identified by the DSWD will get immediate coverage. Padilla said coverage will soon be extended to children under the care of private social welfare institutions.

During the same occasion, PhilHealth also identified the first five private hospitals that agreed to offer its Case Type Z Benefit Package to patients enrolled in the insurance firm.

The Z Benefit Package covers “catastrophic” illnesses such as severe coronary heart disease, congenital heart defects and ventricular septal defects (holes in the ventricles of the heart).

The five hospitals who signed an agreement with PhilHealth were St. Luke’s Medical Center, Global City; Manila Lorma Medical Center in San Fernando City, La Union; Angeles University Foundation Medical Center in Angeles City Pampanga; Mary Mediatrix Medical Center in Lipa, Batangas and St. Paul’s Hospital in Iloilo City.

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The University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital also formalized yesterday its commitment to be the first contracted provider of the Z Benefit Package for colorectal cancer.

Under the agreement, UP-PGH shall make available the benefit packages for colon cancer Stage 1 to 2 (low risk) worth P150,000 up to Stage 2 (high risk) to Stage 3 worth P300,000 to sick PhilHealth members who pass the selections criteria.

The Z benefit rate for the entire course of treatment for rectum cancer Stage 1 to 3 is P150,000 to P400,000.

“Before, this was only available to government institutions but we also saw the need, and as per the wish of Health Secretary Janette Garin, to open these packages to private health facilities to expand PhilHealth benefits to all kinds of patients,” said Padilla. CDG

READ: PhilHealth offers alternate family planning package

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TAGS: Abandoned, Child care, Children, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), neglected, Orphans, Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth)
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