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PIA Press Release

Cotabato health insurance program formally launched

Koronadal, South Cotabato (21 December) -- Cotabato Governor Manny F. Pinol led the formal launching of the Cotabato Health Insurance Program (CHIP) last December 18.

The launching program, which started off with a motorcade from the Kidapawan City Gymnasium to the Provincial Capitol grounds in Amas, was highlighted by the ceremonial enrolment into the program of Gov. Pinol as the first CHIP member.

Gov. Pinol filled up the CHIP application form and had his picture taken for his membership ID with number 000001 which was issued to him in a matter of seconds using a computerized ID machine.

The much-awaited CHIP aims to provide and implement an applicable health benefit package to poor constituents of the province.

"The CHIP will give flesh to our pronouncement that we care for the poorest of the poor of North Cotabato," Gov. Pinol said.

"This will free our people, especially the poor families, from the indignity of begging from local officials for financial assistance in their medical needs. It will also unburden our local governments who are spending millions for medical assistance that is not even enough for the needs of every citizen who has nowhere to go to but government," he said.

Indigent members will be provided health insurance coverage of up to a maximum P75,000 per year for an annual membership fee of P100. The provincial government, municipal government, and barangay will subsidize the rest of the yearly premium of P1,200 contributing P600, P360, and P140 respectively in the name of the indigent member.

Non-indigent individuals may also enroll for coverage at a yearly premium of P1,600. They are however no longer entitled to LGU subsidy.

All enrollees must be PhilHealth members in order to qualify.

Coverage includes expenses for room and board; services of health care professionals; diagnostic, laboratory, and medical examination services; use of surgical or medical equipment and facilities; and prescription drugs and biologicals.

The provincial government has already allocated P6 million for its counterpart in the premium payments of the first batch of indigent members. (IDCD-PGO Kidapawan City/PIA 12) [top]

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