Health cmte endorses JRBGH fee hike

THE City Council committee on health and health insurance chaired by Councilor Maria Lourdes S. Gaane favorably endorsed the proposed amendment of Ordinance No. 12860-2014, on the schedule of fees and charges imposed for the use of facilities and services at the J.R. Borja General Hospital.

During the meeting, Councilor Gaane clarified that the increase will be reimbursed through PhilHealth claims since the city is implementing the “no balance billing” policy considering that patients are under the sponsored program.

“Wala’y out of pocket nga mabayaran sa patient, kundi ang PhilHealth and mobayad sa JRBGH,” she pointed out.

For her part, Dr. Magda Juan of the JRBGH explained there was no increase in fees since the schedule of fees was implemented in 2014. She cited that the cost of laboratory services for Complete Blood Count (CBC) still costs P70.00 even if the cost of supplies ranges from P75 to P100.

Dr. Juan cited that the JRBGH is now offering services for free but pointed out that it is not actually free since it is funded by the institutions that have partnered with the city to subsidize the cost.

“We are very grateful for the support of the city to the hospital, otherwise dili mi makapadayon sa operations considering nga gansi siya,” Dr. Juan said.

In response to the query of Councilor Gaane, a representative of the City Legal Office said there is no need for public consultation as the basis of the increase is in line with the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) and Department of Finance (DOF) memorandum for the adjustment of reasonable regulatory fees.

It is within the limits set forth by the DILG and DOF that does not require public consultation, he added.

Councilor Gaane said the proposal will be referred to the committee on laws and rules chaired by Councilor Ian Mark Q. Nacaya for appropriate action subject to submission of the legal opinion from the City Legal Office.