LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – More than P71.9 million was used up by the Benguet General Hospital (BeGH) for medical assistance to indigent patients even before this year ends that caused the funds to be practically depleted because of the increasing number of patients being admitted due to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
BeGH chief of hospital Meliarazon Dulay said that the medical assistance to indigent patients being given by the health department is a big help in sustaining the operational needs of the hospital because of the difficulty being encountered by the hospital in collecting the pending reimbursements from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation.
Earlier, Gov. Melchor Diclas sourced out some P50 million from the budget department for medical assistance to indigent patients being confined in the hospital followed by the P9.9 million initially provided by Benguet Caretaker Congressman and Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS) Party-list Rep. Eric Go Yap for the same purpose, and another P12 million allocated by the provincial government.
The chief of hospital reported the funds for medical assistance for indigent patients has become the main source of funds of the hospital for its operations as most of the bills of indigent patients and even those COVID cases should be zero billing, thus, the same is charged through the said assistance program of the government.
She stated that since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly 300 COVID patients and still counting had been confined, and the hospital bills of these patients were charged from this medical assistance fund.
Last Saturday, Congressman Yap, together with Gov. Diclas and DOH-CAR regional director Ruby Constantino, turned over to BeGH officials some P20.5 million for the continued implementation of the medical assistance for indigent patients until the need of the year.
Dulay admitted the earlier funds for program had already been exhausted, thus, the release of the P20 million from Congressman Yap, more than P400,000 from the health department and Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque and P99,000 from the Kalinga Party-list is timely, and that the same will surely serve its purpose until the end of the year.
The BeGH official stated the hospital welcomes the support from concerned government agencies, the different provincial and municipal governments, and the private sector, because of the inability of the State health insurer to release pending reimbursements as the same had been rejected by the corporation’s system.
Dulay expressed her gratitude to Congressman Yap. Gov. Diclas and the health department for their continuous support to the hospital purposely to improve the delivery of health care services to the people, especially the indigent residents of the province. By HENT