NEWLY appointed Health Secretary Teodoro Herbosa is backing proposals to transfer the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to the Office of the President (OP).

In a televised public briefing, Herbosa said he believes that the move from the Department of Health (DOH) to the OP will benefit PhilHealth as well as its members.

"If it is under the Office of the President, the problem of corruption and other problems will be closely monitored," said Herbosa.

"It will become more efficient and all of PhilHealth members shall definitely benefit," he added.

Herbosa, however, said that assessment of the proposal remains ongoing.

"The technical working group (TWG) is already doing the study if it will be legal, if it is feasible, and how can it be made more efficient," said Herbosa.

Under Republic Act No. 7875, PhilHealth is attached to the DOH for policy coordination and guidance.

Recently, PhilHealth has submitted a proposal to the DOH for its transfer to the OP.

In response, the DOH has created a TWG composed of officials from the two agencies to evaluate the proposal.

The DOH secretary serves as the chairman of the board of PhilHealth. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)