A solon has filed House Bill 105, which seeks to enact into law the “No Balance Billing Policy” in all accredited healthcare institutions of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth).
The “No Balance Billing (NBB) is a policy PhilHealth introduced in 2011, which mandates that no other fees shall be charged or paid for by covered patients who availed of treatment for any of the most common medical and surgical cases.
Rep. Angelina Tan (4th District, Quezon City), author of the bill, said the proposed law is meant to recognize the rights of the most vulnerable sectors, particularly the poorest of the poor, to a comprehensive health care program.
“This bill also seeks to institutionalize a long-term and optimal financial risk protection to indigents as part of the government’s effort to attain universal health coverage for all Filipinos,” Tan said.
Under bill, the NBB Policy shall be institutionalized for all case-based payments and covered benefits that shall be listed by the Department of Health (DOH).
PhilHealth on the other hand, shall likewise expand the list of priority conditions and procedures to be packaged into case rates.
The bill also sees to make the NBB Policy applicable to all other membership types in the program. This includes those who shall avail of the maternity care package, newborn care package and other similar health services.
The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) shall provide the necessary supplemental funds for cases that require surgery or those that are considered medically difficult.
The comprehensive health care for the indigent shall also include drugs and medicine, supplies or diagnostic procedures, which shall be provided at no added cost.