Friday, 07 August 2020 08:22

´City Hall to sustain free medical services amid pandemic, PhilHealth woes´

Written by Stephen Capillas
´City Hall to sustain free medical services amid pandemic, PhilHealth woes´ Photos by Stephen Capillas

Cagayan de Oro City Hall will continually strive to extend free medical services to the city´s indigent families despite the delays in payment claims from PhilHealth which is facing mounting unpaid claims from across the country´s hospitals, Mayor Oscar Moreno said Wednesday noon (Aug. 5).

“Ato ning serbisyong medikal libre ni alang sa katawhan sa Cagayan de Oro apan kon mabayran man sa PhilHealth (Our medical services are free for the people of Cagayan de Oro and if we are paid by PhilHealth) it´s a bonus for us since City Hall uses these payments to expand its services, acquire more facilities and medicines for our constituents,” Mayor Moreno said during Wednesday noon´s press briefing.

Cagayan de Oro City Hall provided PhilHealth coverage for 8,000 indigent households in the city but was unable to renew membership amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. City Health Officer Dr. Lorraine Nery said at least seven city isolation units used for housing returning Kagay-anons for their two-week quarantine are accredited for payment by PhilHealth.

Mayor Moreno, who described PhilHealth as a “lifeline” for local governments during the pandemic, voiced concern over reports about the agency´s fiscal problems which he said was aggravated in part by the closure of businesses whose owners were unable to remit their employees’ contributions.

Through PhilHealth, City Hall also provided free medical services to the city´s indigent beneficiaries through the city´s JR Borja General Hospital and its barangay health centers.

“As the country´s state insurance agency, PhilHealth needs to survive and it cannot be sustained by government alone which also has other programs to fund for Filipinos,” Mayor Moreno said.