The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) should review its services amid complaints that patients are still paying for their hospitalization.

In a privilege speech Tuesday, Board Member Eduardo Modesto Rodriguez said he has received a lot of complaints against PhilHealth from patients.

“Parang wala ng epekto ang PhilHealth. Mabawasan man ang bayarin ay hindi naman gumaan ang kanilang mga pasanin sa lahat ng mga bayarin sa mga hospital (It’s like PhilHealth is no longer effective. Even if amounts have taken out of their hospital expenses, their burdens do not lighten),” he said.

Rodriguez pointed out that PhilHealth should “reassess its effectivity if it is really helping the poor on their medical needs.”

He said he will be interested to know what are their standard policies, prices for services, medicine and use of hospital apparatus.

“Maaring nakakatulong pero ‘yong impact of helping or providing health care sa Palaweno ay hindi nararamdaman. Kahit nabawasan na ng PhilHealth, ‘yong mga kababayan natin na humihingi ng tulong dito sa atin parang sobrang bigat pa rin ng kanilang dinadala,” Rodriguez said.

(It’s helping, but the impact of providing health care to Palaweños is not being felt. Even if it has provided help, there are still people who come here asking for financial assistance that it seems their burdens were never really eased.)

The indigenous people (IPs) and poor Palaweños are the ones seriously affected.

He said the situation has worsened because of the implementation of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law that drives the prices of basic commodities up.

“May isang instance na may katutubo na lumapit, sabi niya hindi pa rin maramdaman ang tulong ng gobyerno dahil kahit may bawas na ang PhilHealth ay parang ganoon pa rin ang bayarin nila. Dati kasi halagang P50,000 nakakaraos. Ngayon talagang umaabot na ng daang libo ang sinisingil,” he said.

(There was an instance when an IP came here, asking for help because he said he cannot feel the government’s support through PhilHealth because his expenses remained the same. It used to be manageable because if you have P50,000 you’ll be at ease. Right now, however, the expenses already reach more than a P100,000.)

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is the chief of correspondents of Palawan News. She covers defense, politics, tourism, health, and sports stories. She loves to travel and explore different foods.