February 3, 2023

The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has resumed its Covid-19 swab tests after it received partial payment from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth).

PRC Chair and Sen. Richard Gordon made this announcement in an online media briefing recently.

“I have requested the Secretary-General (Elizabeth Zavalla) and all our laboratories in the entire country to open it to PhilHealth again and we are going to have testing on Oct. 27 from the Manila International Airport first and on Oct. 28 regular testing will be conducted in full,” said Gordon.

PhilHealth released some P500 million as partial payment for its P930M debt to the PRC.

Gordon said that the total debt of PhilHealth to the PRC has already reached P1.1 billion.

“We’re going to ask them to pay right away and then lahat ng mga bagong test within three days they get the billing and they pay right away. ‘Di na kami papayag na lalaki ng ganyan. Natakot ako talaga, ang laki ng amount. ‘Pag hindi nabayaran ‘yan, babagsak kami ,” Gordon said.

Also, Gordon said PhilHealth communicated to the PRC its desire to pay an advance payment of P100M.

Gordon said he is amenable to that as long as the full balance is paid by PhilHealth.

Mauuna silang magbigay ng P100M. Uubusin namin hanggang P70M. ‘Pag P30M na lang, dadagdagan ulit nila ng P70M. Revolving ‘yun,” Gordon said.

Before that revol-ving fund, however, Gordon said the rest of the P1.1B should be paid by PhilHealth first.

The PRC has a total of 44 machines for the RT-PCR tests all over the country and 22 of them are in Metro Manila.

He said he wants to bring the cost of the test down and hopes that the saliva testing will soon be approved, saying this will further bring down the cost of the swab test. – PNA release