The government owned Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) , which implements universal health coverage in the country, only has funds to last until 2021, a Senate probe has learnt.
PhilHealth is expected to run out of funds by 2022, unless the government injects more money into the scheme. PhilHealth projects massive losses in 2020 and 2021 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, its acting senior vice president for actuarial services Ms Nerissa Santiago told the Senate earlier this week, according to a report in Rappler.
During the hearing, Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon asked the PhilHealth officials for the corporation’s actuarial life – or the expected longevity of the insurance scheme.
PhilHealth had an actuarial life of more than 10 years before the coronavirus pandemic took hold. Now, decreased collections from PhilHealth members and the expected increase in benefit payouts arising from COVID-19 have had a “double impact” on the programme, she said.
“We expect that by 2021, we will be in the red already, so it’s only one year…in terms of the actuarial life,” she added.
Separately, a PhilHealth officer who resigned from his post as anti-fraud legal officer at the agency told the Senate hearing that officials had allegedly pocketed funds of around PHP15bn ($306m) through abnormal transactions.