PhilHealth Should Pay PHP 500-M Debt To PRC ‘Right Away’, Says Senator Gordon

PhilHealth should pay PHP 500-M debt to the Philippine Red Cross “right away”, according to Senator Gordon.

Senator Richard Gordon on Monday said that the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) should pay the bulk of its PHP 762.8-million debt to the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) “right away”.

This, after Senator Gordon earlier warned that the Philippine Red Cross may be forced to suspend COVID-19 testing anew if PhilHealth failed to settle its mounting debt.

Senator Gordon
Photo source: GMA News Online

In an interview on CNN Philippines, Senator Gordon — the chairperson of the Philippine Red Cross — said that PhilHealth should pay at least half a billion “right away” and then the state health insurer could pay PHP 200 million in one to three days.

Senator Gordon also said that the COVID-19 tests that the Philippine Red Cross needed to facilitate were expected to reach an average of 6,000 to 7,000 daily now that the holidays were over.

He then expressed exasperation over PhilHealth’s payment strategy.

Kung gusto nila bayaran na nila ‘yan, magbago na sila ng contract. Ayoko na ngang makipagkontrata kung ganyan ang labanan dahil mahirap eh. Half the time of our people are wasted worrying about whether we’re going to continue,” Senator Gordon said.

READ ALSO | Senator Gordon: PRC May Halt COVID-19 Tests Anew Over PhilHealth Debt

Nonetheless, Senator Gordon said that it would be the Board of Governors of the Philippine Red Cross which would decide on such matters.

Pressed if the Philippine Red Cross would take legal action against PhilHealth over its pending balances, Senator Gordon said that he didn’t want to file cases as the Philippine Red Cross wasn’t in that business.

Kung titigil ang testing ng Red Cross, napakalaking bagay. Hindi kami nagmamalaki pero gusto namin up to date. Kung pipigilan, lalaki lalo ang maaring magkasakit,” Senator Gordon said.

It was last October when the Philippine Red Cross suspended COVID-19 tests chargeable to PhilHealth after the latter wasn’t able to settle its outstanding balance amounting to nearly PHP 1 billion.

It continued after the Philippine Red Cross received partial payment from PhilHealth.

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