Accredited hospitals can avail of the P30 billion subsidy from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to help them respond to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

The PhilHealth said in a statement that the subsidy can help hospitals with the much needed funds to adequately respond to the pandemic.

The amount to be extended to qualified accredited hospitals is “equivalent to three months’ worth of claims based on historical data, which will be charged to their future claims”, PhilHealth said.

The national health insurer added that hospitals need to submit a letter of intent to avail of the mechanism. This includes hospitals facing sanctions from PhilHealth for various violations of their contracts.

Philhealth added that the arrangement is part of the agency’s efforts to “reduce return-to-hospital payables filed in 2019 and earlier, and to further increase payments to hospitals.”

The state health insurer also announced that it extended the deadline of payment of contributions for its self-paying direct contributor-members and service partners in light of the President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration of a state of public health emergency in the country.

First quarter contributions can be paid on or before April 30, 2020 instead of March 31, 2020 without interest.

Moreover, PhilHealth added that its policy on single period of confinement and 45-days coverage are also waived in favor of the member, while the filing period for claims is also extended from the usual 60 days to at least 120 days in favor of the health care providers.  (Rommel F. Lopez)