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Sunday, April 14, 2024

Speaker lauds PhilHealth move to add more benefits for breast cancer cases

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House Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez on Sunday lauded the decision of the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) to increase the benefit package for breast cancer patients, reiterating his call to further expand other benefit packages and services to include the early detection of cancer.

He praised PhilHealth’s announcement of a 1,400-percent increase in the Z benefit package for breast cancer patients, elevating it from P100,000 to a substantial P1.4 million, describing it as a crucial step toward enhancing healthcare services.

“We applaud PhilHealth for its substantial increase in support for breast cancer patients, marking a significant stride toward advancing healthcare,” Romualdez said.

“Moreover, expanding other benefits and services, particularly in early cancer detection for timely interventions, is essential to ultimately enhance accessibility to cancer care and for addressing other diseases,” he added.

The Speaker acknowledged the importance of addressing the needs of

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breast cancer patients and commended PhilHealth for taking proactive measures to enhance the benefit package.

“The decision of PhilHealth to increase the benefit package for breast cancer patients is a commendable move as it will undoubtedly alleviatethe financial burden faced by patients and their families during their battle against this life-threatening disease,” he said.

The significance of early detection in improving cancer survival rates and urged PhilHealth to further expand its benefits package and services to include comprehensive cancer screening programs.

“While increasing the benefit package for breast cancer patients is a commendable step, we must not overlook the importance of early detection in saving lives. I encourage PhilHealth to consider expanding the package to cover the cost of cancer screenings, enabling early detection and intervention,” the Speaker stressed.

He highlighted the need for comprehensive support, including financial aid and quality healthcare services, to effectively combat the disease.

“Breast cancer affects not only the physical health but also the emotional and financial well-being of patients. We must ensure that our health-care system is equipped to provide comprehensive support to those affected,” he noted.

PhilHealth earlier announced a 30 percent increase in all benefit packages for its members.

Last month, the Speaker instructed the committee on health to conduct a thorough review of the PhilHealth Charter, aiming to expand patients’ benefits, particularly in early cancer detection.

The Speaker’s directive targets increasing benefits to cover at least 50 percent of costs in private hospital wards and providing free examinations for early detection of diseases like cancer.

“With substantial annual allocations from Congress and regular contributions from private employees, there is no excuse for PhilHealth to scrimp on coverage. The effectiveness of the Universal Health Care system depends on our ability to provide for our citizens, ensuring they receive the medical attention and preventive care they deserve,” he said.

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