LAWMAKERS have urged the House Committee on Health to determine the need to reinforce direct public health care spending for life threatening kidney diseases and their treatment.
In House Resolution 2372, Reps. Emmi A. De Jesus and Luzviminda C. Ilagan (Party-list, Gabriela) cited the recent study that an estimated 120 Filipinos-per-million population are afflicted with kidney problems each year.
Hon. Emmi A. De JesusDe Jesus said half of the patients who start dialysis die within one year because they could not afford the sustained dialysis procedures.
A patient requiring dialysis three times a week will need a budget of P57,000 per month or P680,000 per year, according to De Jesus.
De Jesus said PhilHealth covers only about 51 percent of the annual cost of treatment, if the maximum benefit is claimed.
She said the PhilHealth’s 2014 annual report figure of maximum benefit at P270,000 per dialysis patient reflects only 46.5 percent of the annual cost of treatment while some hemodialysis patients report that their benefit is pegged at P180,000 per year.
“Even while PhilHealth started to include peritoneal dialysis in its Z package, supporting less than 50 percent of the patient’s cost is in violation of PhilHealth’s own rule of no balance billing policy,” De Jesus said.
She said a patient who may be employed but receives only minimum wage still cannot afford the remaining 53.5 percent of annual dialysis treatment cost of P34,000 monthly.
“For as long as the State cannot and does not ensure sufficient generation of jobs with adequate living wages for the people, it must ensure maximum funding for social service such as the public health care system,” De Jesus said.
De Jesus said public hospitals with dialysis treatment capacities must be reinforced budget-wise to ensure the constitutional guarantee to indigent patients right to health is assured.
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