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Go calls for special audit on PhilHealth

September 06, 2019 - Friday 3:09 PM by Ruth Palo

Article Banner Image HEALTHCARE WOES. Patients receive treatment at the East Avenue Medical Center in Manila in this file photo taken in July 2018. Senator Christopher Lawrence Go says the alleged corrupt practices in PhilHealth resulted in the wastage of public funds intended to help indigent patients. NOEL CELIS / AFP

“Pera ng taong-bayan ang pondo ng PhilHealth. Galing ‘yan sa mga taong nagpapakahirap sa trabaho at umaasang mabigyan nang maayos na serbisyo kapag sila ay nagkakasakit.” -- Senator Christopher Lawrence Go


Senator Go says PhilHealth funds come from the people who are working hard with the hope that they can get quality service when they get sick.

 

Senator Christopher Lawrence Go vowed to make sure that those involved in the fraudulent and corrupt activities in Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) will be brought to justice. 

During the second Joint Public Hearing on the PhilHealth controversy conducted by the Senate Blue Ribbon and Health and Demography committees, Go asked Commission on Audit (COA) chair Michael Aguinaldo to conduct a special audit on PhilHealth fund utilization and submit their findings to the Office of the Ombudsman.

The hearing was attended by heads of several key government agencies whom Go had called to help investigate and give light to various alleged anomalies involving PhilHealth. 

“Please, Chairman Aguinaldo, I urge you to conduct a special audit and submit your findings to the Ombudsman. Gumawa kayo ng audit para malaman natin kung sino ang mga salarin,” he said.

(Conduct an audit to unmask the ones responsible.) 

Go also asked the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), which were also represented in the hearing, to conduct their own investigations.

“Please get to the bottom of this mess. ‘Wag kayong mahihiyang sabihin kung sino ang mga nasa likod ng kalokohan na ito, kahit sino pa ang mga taong ito. Karapatan ng taumbayan malaman ang katotohanan,” he said.

(Don’t be afraid to tell us who are behind these anomalies, whoever they may be. The people have the right to know the truth.)

Go also told representatives from Department of Justice (DOJ) present during the hearing to file cases against those found responsible for the anomalies.

“No one is above the law,” he said.

The Senator called out current PhilHealth president, retired army general Ricardo Morales, and challenged him to institute immediate reforms in order to put a stop to the anomalies and weed out corruption in the agency. 
 
“Finally, I challenge the leadership of General Morales. I know you are a man of integrity. We trust that you will be able to weed out corruption and the corrupt officials and employees in the agency,” he said.

Go said Morales has a huge responsibility in his hands, especially with the implementation of the Universal Health Care Law.

“Kung gusto natin nang maayos na health care, kailangan natin na maayos ang PhilHealth,” Go stressed.

(If we want quality healthcare, we must fix PhilHealth.)

Go said allegations of fraud, overpayment and unpaid claims, accreditation suspension, conflict of interest of officials, overstocking of medicines and supplies, and reorganization have been crippling the credibility and accountability of healthcare services in the country over the years.

“Inuulit ko – pera ng taong-bayan ang pondo ng PhilHealth. Galing ‘yan sa mga taong nagpapakahirap sa trabaho at umaasang mabigyan nang maayos na serbisyo kapag sila ay nagkakasakit. Ang pera ng mga PhilHealth members, dapat ibalik sa kanila. Hindi ito dapat ibinubulsa ng iilan lang,” he said.

(I say again that the PhilHealth funds are the people’s money. That comes from the people who are working hard with the hope that they can get quality service when they get sick. The money of the PhilHealth members must return to them in the form of service. It must not be pockted by a few people.)

Go also lamented that as public servants are working tirelessly to uplift the lives and improve health services for the people, there are others who continue to destroy the reputation and taint the trust of the people in the government.

He also vowed that the Senate investigation will produce results.

“Noon, ‘pag may gagawing imbestigasyon, laging walang nangyayari. Walang resulta dahil nagtuturuan lang ang mga sangkot. Napakaraming rason, wala namang solusyon. Sawang-sawa na ang sambayanang Pilipino sa mga problemang tulad nito,” he said.

(It used to be that nothing happens to the investigations. There were no results because the people involved point to each other. There have been so many reasons but no solutions. THe people have had enough to problems like this.) MDM

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