BE advocates of the National Health Insurance Program.
This was the message imparted to local chief executives (LCEs) who attended the recent Social Health Insurance Education Series (SHInES) organized and conducted by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) in Cebu City .
Six LCEs, namely Inosentes Cabaron of Moalboal, Ronald Guaren of Oslob, Mariano Blanco III of Ronda, Nicomedes de los Santos of Alcoy, Verna Magallon of Alegria and Leonel Bacaltos of Sibonga attended the activity together with 52 other representatives of the different municipalities of Cebu province.
“I believe that we should start building models of civic advocacy that perpetuates through time, through sustained management and issues, maintaining linkages and people support groups that would lift the NHIP to a higher level,” said Ramon F. Aristoza Jr., PhilHealth’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.
At the same time, PhilHealth Vice President for Region VII William O. Chavez emphasized that providing PhilHealth membership is not only ensuring health care to all Filipinos but that it is also a way to help alleviate poverty of our fellow Filipinos. He stressed that it is PhilHealth’s wish that after the SHInES, “PhilHealth’s mandate shall become your advocacy and that ultimately we shall manifest an unwavering commitment and burning passion to provide affordable, available, accessible, quality health care to residents of your respective Local Government Units.”
PhilHealth conducts the SHInES to educate and empower various stakeholders and members about PhilHealth and the NHIP. Corporate Affairs Group OIC-Vice President Dr. Israel Francis A. Pargas, Social Health Insurance Academy Senior Manager Arsenia Torres and Maria Sophia B. Varlez, Senior Manager of the Corporate Communication Dept. and Dr. Maria Eliza A. Batucan, Medical Specialist of PhilHealth PRO VII discussed updates on the National Health Insurance Act of 2013, new and enhanced PhilHealth benefits, membership programs, roles of LGU in the health service delivery as well as the roles of media in advocating the NHIP.
The activity was received warmly by the participant-LCEs. “The activity is a good avenue for the Local Chief Executives to be appraised of what PhilHealth is all about since we are partners in providing the services to the people,” said Guaren. “The activity is appropriate and laudable,” he added.
On the other hand, De los Santos was motivated to assign a point person for PhilHealth issues and concerns. “Ang dami palang PhilHealth benefits na dapat ipaalam sa mga tao. This time, I will delegate a focal person to act as PhilHealth information officer so we can reach many people, as many beneficiaries of PhilHealth as possible,” he exclaimed.
The SHInES in Cebu City was spearheaded by the Corporate Affairs Group of PhilHealth, led by the SHIA, in collaboration with PhilHealth Regional Office VII. (END)