The Makati City government, through its Health Plus Program, announced on Friday it has granted lifetime Yellow Card membership to 4,559 of the 83,119 cardholders from January 2017 to June 2019.
The Yellow Card provides government-subsidized health care to cardholders and registered dependents, city government workers and other qualified beneficiaries at the city-run Ospital ng Makati, the city’s 26 barangay health centers, satellite laboratories, and three birthing facilities.
Mayor Abigail Binay said lifetime Yellow Card members include senior citizens who own real property in Makati and have updated tax declarations, residents aged 80 and above who have been Yellow Card members for at least six years, and retired city government employees of Makati.
“By replacing the annual renewal of Yellow Cards with four types of validity period including lifetime membership, we have provided great relief and convenience to our constituents. Qualified members no longer have to go to City Hall every time their cards expire on their birthday,” she said said.
Based on the Makati Health Office’s report to the mayor, 458 Yellow Card holders were given lifetime membership for this year as of June 30, in addition to 2,687 approved in 2018 and 1,414 in 2017.
In 2016, the Makati Health Development Council chaired by Binay approved the revised program guidelines modifying the validity period of the Yellow Card, taking into consideration the age, status of residency, and length of membership of the cardholder.
In addition to lifetime membership, the Yellow Card at present is also being issued in three types of validity period: one year, two years, and three years.
The Health office stated there were 6,573 new applications approved and 14,428 renewals from January to June 2019. It further reported the breakdown of Yellow Cards for the first half of this year issued by type, as follows: 6,602 family cards (with dependents); 9,164 solo cards; 3,594 senior citizens; and 1,183 city government employees.
The Yellow Card can also be used to partner-facilities like the Makati Medical Center to avail themselves of specialized medical and diagnostic services that may not be available at OsMak.
“In Makati, we focus on improving the health and social services given to Makatizens to ensure a healthy citizenry. Residents are assured that medical experts will help them prevent and manage diseases,” Mayor Binay said.
Also under the revised MHP guidelines, the color-coded payment scheme that was based on household monthly income was replaced with a uniform rate, as Binay vowed to pursue 100 percent Yellow Card coverage for all eligible Makatizens, including city hall employees.
Yellow Card patients at Osmak with total hospital bill amounting to P5,000 or less are free of charge, while those whose hospital bill exceeds P5,000 will be charged a uniform rate of P500 only, even if the amount reaches six or seven digits.
Apart from government-subsidized health care, the Yellow Card also gives cardholders access to free medicines, including maintenance medicines for hypertension, diabetes and other lifestyle diseases, as well as other pharmaceutical products.
To qualify for lifetime membership with the Yellow Card, applicants who are 60 to 79 years old must submit a Certified True Copy of the latest Certificate of Non-Delinquency of Real Property Taxes, with the tax declaration bearing the applicant’s name.
Makati residents aged 80 years and above who have been Yellow Card holders for the past six years shall qualify for lifetime membership without having to submit the said document required of the younger age group. Only those who do not meet the prescribed period of membership with the program shall be required to submit the tax declaration.
Retired Makati city government employees, regardless of residency and Comelec registration, will also be granted lifetime membership with the Yellow Card.
Yellow Cards valid for three years are granted to registered voters and actual residents of Makati City, city government employees and senior citizens who are 60 years old and above who do not meet the qualifications for a lifetime membership. The three-year validity also applies to regular employees as well as casual employees who have served the city for at least six years.
For casual city government employees who have been in the service for five years, relocatees, and national government employees who are assigned in Makati City, Yellow Cards valid for two years are issued to them.
Meanwhile, registered voters but non-Makati residents, as well as city government employees on job order, contractual, consultants, and casual who have been in service for less than five years, should renew their Yellow Cards annually.