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PhilHealth unable to settle P27 billion debt to hospitals

MANILA, Philippines — State health insurer Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) will be unable to pay in full its P27-billion debt to health facilities as some payments are not “good claims,” an official said on Saturday

“Not all in the P27 billion are good claims so some will be denied or (those where payments were made), they have to give it back,” PhilHealth Corporate Affairs Group acting vice president Rey Baleña said in an interview.

“That’s why our sight is set on paying out all good claims,” he added.

The Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines Inc. (PHAPI) reiterated that PhilHealth should settle its debt to health facilities before 2023 ends.

PHAPI president Dr. Jose Rene de Grano earlier said they would make an announcement regarding PhilHealth’s inaction if hospitals have not received their payment by January next year.

The group asserted that it did not receive any amount from PhilHealth, although the state insurer said it has disbursed 76 percent of its outstanding debt to hospitals.

During a press briefing in October, PhilHealth said it had settled P20.651 billion of its P27-billion debt to hospitals.

Baleña earlier said the delay could be related to the hacking incident that affected PhilHealth’s database last September.

He urged hospitals to meet with PhilHealth regional offices to reconcile claims records.

“Reconciliation is important to put things in proper perspective. Returned and denied claims should no longer be considered receivables unless these are refiled and/or appealed,” he noted.

Baleña added that they have made payments amounting to P32.3 billion, which are “made to both government and private hospitals.”

“We are now going back to our normal P2.5 billion payments every week,” he said.