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PIA Press Release

2,706 PUV drivers, operators, dispatchers enroll with Philhealth

by Lito Dar

Baguio City (29 May) -- About 2,706 Public Utility Vehicle (PUV) drivers, operators, dispatchers from Baguio, Benguet, La Union, and Pangasinan, together with their families are now enrolled to the indigent program of the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PHIC) or PhilHealth.

According to Public Transport Affairs Office (PTAO) head Perfecto "Jun" Itliong, the PhilHealth cards are now in their office and some of the cards are already distributed. He is calling on those who earlier signed for the program to go to their office to claim their PhilHealth cards even as they are now in the process of tracing the address of those whose cards that are not yet distributed.

Itliong said the bearers and their families are already insured from March of this year up to February of 2011.

Itliong, who is also the Northern Luzon leader of One - United Transport Koalition (1-UTAK), explained that the health insurance for the public transport sector materialized through the effort of 1-UTAK House Representative Congressman Vigor Mendoza, in partnership with the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) and PHIC.

For the public transport sector members who do not have Philhealth cards yet, Itliong advises them to go to the PTAO office/1-UTAK Regional office at PCCI-BBC, PTA Building at Governor Pack Road, Baguio City and request for registration.

Meantime, PHIC-CAR Social Insurance Officer III Jojo Cruz confirmed that last February 21 through the initiative of 1-UTAK, PCSO and PhilHealth signed a Memorandum of Agreement for the enrollment to PHIC- Sponsored programs of 200,000 members of the transport sector nationwide.

According to Cruz, under the agreement, the national government through Philhealth committed P360 million to the program that will give health insurance coverage to the 200,000 target members of the transport sector and to their families for three years.

For the period March 2010 to February 2011, PCSO and Philhealth shelled out P120 million each, or a sharing of 50-50 percent for the health insurance coverage.

Considered as the heart of the National Health Insurance Program, the sponsored program provides health insurance coverage to less privileged families through a partnership where health insurance premiums for a year's coverage are paid in behalf of deserving members.

The annual premiums of enrolled families are jointly shouldered by the national government through PhilHealth and sponsors such as local governments, private individuals with philanthropic hearts and private corporations whose thrusts include poverty alleviation as an agenda in their corporate social responsibility programs. Members of Congress also join the program as sponsors through their Priority Development Assistance Fund or PDAF. (PIA) [top]

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