COVID-19 testing done by the Philippine Red Cross is once again at risk of being stopped due to the huge outstanding debt of Philippine Health Insurance Corporation amounting to over PHP762 million, Senator Richard Gordon said.
Gordon, PRC’s chairman, said PhilHealth has an outstanding balance of ₱762.8 million as of January 2.
“Last payment was December 29, 2020. Ang binayaran nila₱100,812,000,” the senator said.
This was not enough, according to Gordon, as PRC spends an estimated ₱35 million daily for COVID-19 tests it conducts for the government.
PhilHealth pays for the RT-PCR tests conducted by PRC for returning overseas Filipino workers, as well as frontline health and government workers.
Gordon is urging the state insurer to settle its debt to the nongovernmental organization as soon as possible.
“We’re testing at a rate of ₱35 million a day. Between ₱30 to ₱35 million a day. So what happens? Within three days, almost gone ‘yung ₱100 million. So dapat they should be paying regularly the ₱100 million para hindi lalaki, because that puts us in harm’s way. And if we stop, it will be catastrophic again. Dadami na naman ‘yung may sakit.”
The senator also emphasized that this debt will paralyze the operations of PRC if not settle immediately.
“We cannot have such a big liability and ‘di na kami makakakilos. There are things we have to pay for. We’ve got operations, continuous operations,” Gordon said.