PhilHealth: Senior citizen, PWD discounts must be applied prior to hospital discharge

PhilHealth: Senior citizen, PWD discounts must be applied prior to hospital discharge
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THE Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) has reminded its accredited health facilities nationwide to deduct the statutory senior citizens or persons with disabilities discounts from their total medical bills prior to hospital discharge. 

“PhilHealth received reports that a number of health facilities failed to deduct the senior citizens discounts from their bills, this is why we released PhilHealth Advisory 2023-0036 for our partner hospitals to observe at all times”, PhilHealth President and CEO Emmanuel R. Ledesma, Jr. announced. 

The said discounts are mandated under Republic Acts 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act, and 10754 or the Expanded Benefits and Privileges of Persons with Disability Act. The application of these discounts is also provided in the health facilities' Performance Commitment with PhilHealth.

“We have to give whatever the law mandates. This is our responsibility to our members, and one of them is to ensure that their senior citizen or PWD privileges, whichever is applicable, are properly deducted from their hospital bills”, Ledesma asserted. However, in cases where a patient is an elderly and a PWD at the same time, only one discount shall apply.  

The state health insurer also clarified that the application of the deductions shall be in the following order: 12% VAT exemption, 20% senior citizens or PWD discount, then the PhilHealth benefits. "Yun pong balanse ang siya na lamang dapat bayaran ng pasyente kung mayroon pa. Kung ang ating senior citizen member ay na-admit naman sa mga pampublikong pasilidad ay wala na silang babayaran dahil sa aming No Balance Billing policy", Ledesma reiterated, adding that this can be validated by checking their billing statements. 

Health facilities that fail to deduct these privileges may face penalties and sanctions, including fines and even suspension or revocation of accreditation as provided for in their Performance Commitment with PhilHealth. 

The state agency also encouraged members and concerned citizens to immediately report instances of non-deduction of these privileges to the Office for Senior Citizens Affairs in their respective local government units, or to the National Council for Disability Affairs. These can also be reported to PhilHealth Callback Channel 0917-898-7442 or to PhilHealth's  Facebook page @PhilHealthofficial and Twitter@teamphilhealth.  

"Igiit natin ang ating karapatan dahil ang mga ito ay itinakda ng mga batas. Kami naman ay nakahandang umaksiyon sakaling may mga ulat kaming matatanggap mula sa ating mga miyembro", the PhilHealth chief ended. PR


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