PHILIPPINE Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) denied senior officials have pocketed some P15 billion as alleged by Lawyer Thorsson Keith during the Senate hearing on August 4, 2020.
In a statement, PhilHealth said Keith was hired as a job order contractor to do staff work under the Office of the President and is in no position to discuss office matters being in the corporation for only nine months.
“His malicious claims not substantiated by evidence were obviously made to malign officers that rejected his ambitions for higher offices, which he is not qualified for,” the statement reads.
PhilHealth added the fund alluded to by Keith was the Interim Reimbursement Mechanism (IRM) that was released to a total of 711 health care facilities to assure efficient response to the Covid-19 pandemic,
It added there was no "favoritism" in the release of these funds as earlier alleged, rather the releases followed existing guidelines.
“Contrary to reports that hospitals no longer need to account for these funds, the IRM is governed by government accounting and auditing rules, hence, it is subject to liquidation by its recipients. The PhilHealth regional offices have been given the flexibility in the timing of liquidations recognizing the situations in each hospital,” PhilHealth added.
Retired Brigadier General Ricardo Morales, president and chief executive officer of PhilHealth, said it is worthy to note that in recognition of the crucial help that the IRM plays in the fight against Covid-19, the Philippine Hospital Association, in a statement, expressed its support to its implementation in all levels of hospitals (including infirmaries), to help “financially cope with the demands of increasing its capacity to respond to Covid-19.”