Philippines health - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Philippines health

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Duterte appoints to DOH ex-PhilHealth exec who quit over fraudulent claims

Feb 17, 2020 - 10:16 PM

Roy Ferrer is named an assistant secretary of the Department of Health months after he was made to hand in a courtesy resignation over fraudulent claims made to PhilHealth

BACK IN GOVERNMENT. File photo of Roy Ferrer from PhilHealth

Study recommends PH regulatory changes for better access to mobile health apps

Oct 24, 2019 - 7:58 PM

Mobile health technologies may help make healthcare more accessible and affordable, according to new study 'Mobile Digital Health in the Philippines'

Image from PruLife


Hontiveros slams private hospitals for threat to cut ties with Philhealth

Oct 23, 2019 - 7:19 PM

Senator Risa Hontiveros calls the threat 'sad and ill-timed' as the landmark Universal Health Care Act will begin implementation next year

'CALLOUS, CRIMINAL.' Senator Risa Hontiveros slams private hospitals' threat to withdraw accreditation from Philhealth due to unpaid reimbursements.

PH health care, infra, institutions among worst in the world – WEF

Oct 09, 2019 - 2:00 PM

The Philippines is down 8 spots in the World Economic Forum's 2019 Global Competitiveness Report

Whistle-blowers in Philhealth-Wellmed scam arrested

Oct 04, 2019 - 11:32 AM

(UPDATED) Lawyer Harry Roque is requesting the Ombudsman to take over so the whistle-blowers can qualify as state witnesses

ARRESTED. Whistleblowers Liezel Aileen De Leon and Edwin Roberto (1st and 2nd from left, in the background) are arrested over estafa cases related in the Philhealth-Wellmed ghost dialysis scandal. File photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

[OPINION] Dengue fever and the language of medicine

Sep 29, 2019 - 8:45 PM

The language of medicine should connect with the language of the people

DOH, UNICEF launch animation contest for 'Goodbye, Dumi! Hello, Healthy!' campaign

Sep 20, 2019 - 6:50 PM

PRESS RELEASE: The campaign is composed of various communication tools and strategies focusing on the core messages of always using the toilet and washing hands with soap during critical times

WATCH: Senate hearing on Philhealth, DOH corruption allegations

Sep 05, 2019 - 4:42 PM

Philhealth allegedly continues paying WellMed Dialysis Center even after its accreditation was suspended because of its involvement in a scam

PhilHealth officials: NBI accusations 'sweeping, irresponsible, insensitive'

Aug 30, 2019 - 4:00 PM

PhilHealth officials accused of failing to flag fraudulent claims of the Wellmed Dialysis Center, say the NBI copied their names from a harmless document without investigating them

NBI files graft complaints vs 21 Philhealth officials over Wellmed scam

Aug 28, 2019 - 4:40 PM

The officials hold different positions in the accreditation committee of Philhealth

COA approves special audit of Philhealth funds – Drilon

Aug 20, 2019 - 9:01 PM

Senate Minority Franklin Drilon also says the Commission on Audit will conduct an 'accurate review' of the actuarial life of Philhealth

Ex-Philhealth officials, 'Mindanao group' trade allegations at Senate hearing

Aug 14, 2019 - 6:54 PM

The group, composed mostly of Philhealth regional vice presidents, are reportedly known in the government agency for their clout. Members of the group call themselves 'anti-fraud crusaders.'

PHILHEALTH MAFIA? 4 of the alleged 7 members of PhilHealth mafia appeared before the senate blue ribbon committee which is investigating the anomalies in PhilHealth. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

WellMed received payments from PhilHealth despite suspension

Jul 29, 2019 - 8:38 PM

Senator Panfilo Lacson says the dialysis center was even paid ‘with record speed’ of just two days at the time when the fraud was already made public

HMOs told not to discriminate against people living with HIV

Jul 17, 2019 - 6:25 PM

The Insurance Commission sets guidelines for health maintenance organizations on the assessment of risks of persons with HIV or perceived to have HIV

COA to Philhealth regional officials: Return P34-M illegal bonuses

Jul 16, 2019 - 7:58 PM

The Commission on Audit denies the petitions for review filed by Philhealth regional offices in Metro Manila and Soccsksargen

Angara wants Senate probe into Philhealth scam

Jul 03, 2019 - 12:56 PM

Senator Juan Edgardo Angara says the probe would help craft policies to 'prevent such fraud' and 'conduct a review of the fund utilization' of the government corporation

Duque volunteers to be investigated by DOJ in ongoing PhilHealth probe

Jun 25, 2019 - 2:50 PM

Even though he was not being probed, the health secretary asks the DOJ to investigate him

WARNING ISSUED. Department of Health Secretary Francisco Duque asks the DOJ to include in tis investigation his family-owned property leased to PhilHealth in Dagupan City,  Pangasinan. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

FALSE: PhilHealth’s problems started during Hontiveros' term – Garin

Jun 20, 2019 - 1:34 PM

The former health secretary said they spotted fraudulent schemes way back in 2006. Hontiveros was not yet part of PhilHealth then

Ricardo Morales named PhilHealth president

Jun 20, 2019 - 1:02 PM

(UPDATED) From being appointed to the MWSS, retired army general Ricardo Morales has been tapped to head the embattled PhilHealth

Gov't to run after corrupt health providers, PhilHealth officials – Duque

Jun 12, 2019 - 10:58 PM

'Tama na ang hocus pocus...I will ensure that justice will be served to those who defraud the system,' says Health Secretary Francisco Duque III

WARNING ISSUED. Department of Health Secretary Francisco Duque hits fraudulent payments made over 'ghost' kidney treatments. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

Why doctor in Philhealth scandal is still detained despite warrantless arrest

Jun 12, 2019 - 10:42 AM

’It is unclear what the basis is,’ says law professor Ted Te who also called a court’s habeas corpus ruling ‘confusing’

IN DETENTION. Wellmed Dialysis Center owner Dr Bryan Sy will remain in detention despite a warrantless arrest. Photo by Lian Buan/Rappler

After reshuffle, PhilHealth COO Ruben Basa to take over as officer-in-charge – Duque

Jun 11, 2019 - 9:55 PM

Health Secretary Francisco Duque II assures the public PhilHealth's services would not be affected by the reshuffle and change in leadership

Dialysis center staff face fraud charges, but not Philhealth officials

Jun 11, 2019 - 7:50 PM

Complaints of estafa and falsification of documents are filed against 10 employees of the Wellmed Dialysis Center, including the two whistleblowers

PHILHEALTH SCANDAL. Dr Bryan Sy (center) of Wellmed Dialysis Center faces complaints of estafa and falsification of documents before the Department of Justice. Photo by Lian Buan/Rappler

Duterte asks doctor-businessman Jaime Cruz to be PhilHealth president

Jun 11, 2019 - 2:38 PM

Dr Jaime T. Cruz, CEO of the JTC Group of Companies, is yet to accept the President's offer

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte discusses matters with Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) officials led by its acting president, Dr. Roy Ferrer, during a meeting at the Malacañan Palace on June 10, 2019. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Doctor tagged in Philhealth scandal arrested without warrant

Jun 11, 2019 - 11:46 AM

Dr Brian Sy, an owner of the dialysis center that allegedly charged Philhealth for the treatment of ghost patients, is arrested when he shows up at the NBI on a subpoena

WARRANTLESS ARREST. The National Bureau of Investigation arrests without a warrant one of the owners of the WellMed Dialysis Center tagged in the ghost claims Philhealth scandal. Photo by Angie de Silva

Duterte asks PhilHealth acting president, board members to resign

Jun 10, 2019 - 6:53 PM

(UPDATED) But President Rodrigo Duterte will still need to accept their resignation. Malacañang gives assurances PhilHealth services will not be hampered.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte presides over the 36th Cabinet Meeting at the Malacañan Palace on April 1, 2019. TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Duterte eyes reshuffle at PhilHealth

Jun 08, 2019 - 9:46 AM

(UPDATED) The planned reshuffle stems from allegations that the government agency paid for the dialysis treatment of patients who were already dead or had completed their treatment

Duterte orders PhilHealth to run after employees in 'ghost' kidney treatments

Jun 07, 2019 - 4:18 PM

PhilHealth management must pursue criminal complaints against officials and employees involved in the alleged scam, says President Rodrigo Duterte

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the 2019 Eid'l Fitr Celebration at the Arcadia Active Lifestyle Center in Davao City on June 6, 2019. TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Hospitals urged to reduce plastic waste

Jun 05, 2019 - 6:50 PM

International NGO Health Care Without Harm wants to influence hospitals to reduce plastic use and help local government units craft better policies that can also guide hospitals

Photo from Shutterstock

Bicam approves universal health care bill

Nov 27, 2018 - 8:00 PM

If the bill is signed into law, all Filipinos would get 'immediate eligibility' for and access to the full spectrum of health care

APPROVED. Lawmakers from the Senate and the House of Representatives approved a reconciled version of the universal health care bill. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Another PhilHealth acting president accused of corruption

Nov 08, 2018 - 7:50 PM

Employees tell the Ombudsman PhilHealth acting president and CEO Roy Ferrer continued to be reimbursed by PhilHealth as a private doctor while receiving salaries and allowances as its board member

INVESTIGATION. PhilHealth Acting President Roy Ferrer faces a complaint filed by his own employees before the Ombudsman. Photo from PhilHealth

[OPINION] A young doctor's views on health workforce in PH

Oct 14, 2018 - 4:36 PM

We may be young and idealistic, but I believe that our will and passion to serve can take us and our country to places

LENDING A HAND. Fostering doctors' interest in serving the Philippines begins way before medical school. Image from Shutterstock

COA to PhilHealth: Return P164-M illegal perks

Aug 03, 2018 - 8:47 AM

The Commission on Audit reminds PhilHealth that its operating fund is mainly sourced from members' contributions which 'should be managed and protected with utmost integrity'

What Duterte government’s P100M subsidies can do for PGH patients

Jul 31, 2018 - 9:00 AM

With quicker turnover of patients, funds for medical tests, and access to free medicine in a matter of days, the Philippine General Hospital can treat more indigents

Fast Facts: What has the government done to alleviate malnutrition?

Jul 25, 2018 - 5:12 PM

The Philippine government has shown a history of focused policy, but scattershot implementation

Duterte urges 'speedy passage' of universal health care bill

Jul 24, 2018 - 12:30 PM

While the House has passed its version of the bill, the counterpart measure in the Senate is still pending in the committee level

PUBLIC HEALTH. Nurses tend to a woman at the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center in Manila. File photo by AFP

Employees hold nationwide vigil to protest PhilHealth mismanagement

Jun 08, 2018 - 3:21 PM

(UPDATED) From Luzon to Mindanao, employees unite to protest the grave abuses inside the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation. They send photos deliberately blurred to hide their identities.

SHOW OF FORCE. PhilHealth employees nationwide wear black shirts in protest of the mismanagement of the agency.

House to investigate PhilHealth OIC's excessive travels, hotel stays

Jun 01, 2018 - 9:28 PM

Surigao Del Norte 2nd District Representative Johnny Pimentel says he will schedule a probe in August into the lavish lifestyle of PhilHealth interim president Celestina De la Serna

Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Garin, Padilla face graft complaint over P10.6-B PhilHealth seniors' fund

May 29, 2018 - 6:10 PM

Former health secretary Janette Garin and ex-PhilHealth CEO Alex Padilla deny the accusation, saying there was no money lost or stolen when they used the fund to establish health centers nationwide

Contrary to OIC claim, PhilHealth rents housing for its officers

May 13, 2018 - 3:45 PM

Documents and photos contradict the claim of interim president Celestina Ma Jude de la Serna that PhilHealth 'doesn't have a service apartment' so she has to stay in hotels

PhilHealth OIC seeks meeting with Duterte to defend trips

May 06, 2018 - 7:15 PM

'If somebody from Malacañang is watching, I am waiting for the President to call me or if I can set an appointment with him, at least hear my side,' says PhilHealth interim president Celestina Ma Jude de la Serna

In Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte, barangays are rewarded for being healthy

May 03, 2018 - 9:00 AM

Mayor Alfredo Coro II has introduced a system where barangays earn monetary rewards according to how they meet health indicators every year

IMPROVED HEALTH NUMBERS. The number of infant deaths in Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte, has dropped significantly, and the communities are able to detect major communicable diseases even before they became uncontrollable. Photo by Kaya Natin! Movement

PhilHealth OIC spends P627k for travels amid P9-B net loss in 2017

May 02, 2018 - 8:09 PM

State auditors ask PhilHealth interim president Celestina Ma. Jude de la Serna to explain the 'irregular' allowances she received, amounting to almost a million pesos in 2017

Photo from Philhealth website

Duque wants universal healthcare in PH by 2030

Nov 08, 2017 - 1:28 PM

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III also aims to make the DOH the top performing government agency under the Duterte administration

AIMING HIGH. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III wants universal healthcare for all Filipinos by 2030. Screenshot by Rappler

PhilHealth to reimburse fees regardless of hospitalization period

Oct 27, 2017 - 8:30 AM

PhilHealth members' confinement fees will now be covered if they were admitted due to pneumonia, acute gastroenteritis, and UTI even for just a day

WIDER COVERAGE. PhilHealth lifts its length of stay requirement in covering confinement fees due to 3 common diseases

DOH seeks more funds for health facilities in 2018

Aug 12, 2017 - 10:00 AM

The P103 602 billion proposed DOH budget for next year includes funds to build 1 497 barangay health stations improve 353 hospitals and hire around 24 400 medical practitioners

PUBLIC HEALTHCARE. Nurses tend to a woman at the Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center in Manila. File photo by AFP

Health experts push for PH policy on teenage pregnancy

Jul 11, 2017 - 5:05 PM

On World Population Day experts call on lawmakers to work towards the enactment of bills tackling the issue of teenage pregnancy in the Philippines

PhilHealth benefits for foreign retirees in PH starting July

Jun 16, 2017 - 1:44 PM

This expansion of coverage is based on a memorandum of understanding signed by PhilHealth and the Philippine Retirement Authority in 2015 that aims to promote the country as a retirement haven for qualified foreigners

Ex-PhilHealth interim president: I was 'involuntarily ousted'

Apr 11, 2017 - 3:32 PM

UPDATED Hildegardes Dineros says he considers himself on hold over status and awaiting further orders and instructions from the Office of the President

DUTERTE POSE. In this file photo, former PhilHealth interim president and CEO Hildegardes Dineros (L) pose with Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial (2-L) and Celestina De la Serna (R), the new interim PCEO. File photo from PhilHealth website

Amid execs' rift, PhilHealth names new interim president and CEO

Apr 10, 2017 - 7:20 PM

The change in leadership comes amid a supposed rift between Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial and former interim president and CEO Hildegardes Dineros

NEW INTERIM PRESIDENT. The PhilHealth board names Celestina De la Serna as new interim president and CEO of the agency. File photo from PhilHealth website