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PhilHealth Signs MOA with Pharmaceutical Companies for Quality Medicines at discounted Prices September 27, 2012

The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) formally entered into an agreement with 11 leading pharmaceutical companies to greatly reduce the cost of drugs and medicines for catastrophic illnesses under the PhilHealth Z benefit package. The MOA signing was held at the Lecture Room of the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) on September 17, 2012 headed by PhilHealth President and CEO Dr. Eduardo P. Banzon and heads of the 11 pharma companies. Also present during the signing were representatives of the Philippine Chambers of Pharmaceuticals Inc. (PCPI) and the Pharmaceuticals Associations of the Philippines (PHAP).

"We commit to provide quality benefits, likewise we find ways that these benefits be brought to and felt by PhilHealth members by ensuring sufficient supply of drugs and medicines in government hospitals to guarantee better health outcomes and financial risk protection," said PhilHealth President and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Eduardo P. Banzon. He also stressed the pharmaceutical companies' vital role in attaining the government's thrust of Universal Health Care or 'Kalusugan Pangkalahatan' through its private-public partnership. This partnership will also help address the problem of accessibility especially those in the marginalized sector of society. "Better benefits come with quality service. We want to lessen the burden of our members afflicted with catastrophic diseases by improving not just the benefits but also ensure hassle-free availment," Banzon added.

Dubbed "One with Pharma Z," the partnership will enable PhilHealth members and their qualified dependents to avail themselves of quality medicines for identified catastrophic illnesses at discounted prices.

The PHAP Deputy Executive Director Mr. Teodoro Padilla said during the MOA signing that, "we are proud that PHAP members GlaxoSmithKline Philippines, Novartis Healthcare Philippines, Pfizer Philippines, Roche Philippines, Sanofic-Aventis Philippines and soon to join member Astellas Pharma Philippines continue to respond to the urgent call to place deliberate focus on the poor as we make life-saving medicines more and more accessible to patients when they get hospitalized and even when they are already home."

Another pharma group who expressed their support to the program was the "voice of Philippine Pharmaceuticals Manufacturers and Traders" or the Philippine Chambers of Pharmaceuticals, Inc. or PCPI. Mr. Thomas Marcelo Go III, representative of the PCPI said that "we offer our medicines, our expertise, and support to PhilHealth as it embarked on this program." He further said "Ang PCPI ay kapartner ninyo, sa pagdating ng minimithing hangarin ng Kalusugang Pangkalahatan." Mr. Rolando Bautista, the President and CEO of PITC Pharma, an agency under the Department of trade and industry PITC and NDC likewise affirmed their commitment to PhilHealth by saying "we will continue to collaborate with all stakeholders especially PhilHealth to achieve this laudable goal."

None-PHAP members who also signed the MOA were the Ambica International Trading, DeGa International Pharma Corp., Globo-Asiatico Ent. Inc., Pascual Pharma and PITC.

Under the agreement, pharmaceutical companies will provide the initial 21 selected government Levels 3 & 4 contracted hospitals located nationwide with drugs and medicines at a discounted price for availment of members who are pre-qualified to avail of the package.

Under the Z benefit package which was launched in July 2012, catastrophic illnesses initially covered for are childhood Acute Lymphocytic (Lymphoblastic) Leukemia (ALL) with a benefit costs of P210,000.00; early stage Breast Cancer (stage 0 to III-A) shall be at P100,000.00 for the entire course of treatment; Prostate Cancer (low to intermediate risk) requiring Prostatectomy for P100,000.00; and kidney transplant or end stage kidney disease requiring kidney transplant for P600,000.00.

The Z benefit package can be availed on the following contracted hospitals:
  Jose B. Lingad Memorial Hospital
  Dr. J. Paulino Memorial Medical Center
  Batangas Regional Hospital
  Bicol Medical Center
  Bicol Regional and Teaching Hospital
  Western Visayas Medical Center
  Dona Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Medical Center
  Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center
  Northern Mindanao Medical Center
  Davao Regional Hospital
  Southern Philippines Memorial Medical Center
  East Avenue Medical Center
  National Kidney and Transplant Institute
  Philippine Childrens Medical Center
  Quirino Memorial Medical Center
  Rizal Medical Center
  Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center
  Baguio General Hospital



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