Buhay OFW

No more free COVID-19 swab test for repatriated OFWs

Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and frontliners can no longer avail of COVID-19 swab test from the Philippine Red Cross.

Since Wednesday, the PRC has stopped accepting specimens from OFWs and frontliners due the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth’s) alleged inability to pay accumulated testing fee amounting to P930 million.

PhilHealth urged OFWs and other affected sectors to go to other accredited testing centers to avail of the agency’s benefits while the issue is still being resolved.

“The agency is in close coordination with PRC to thresh out the issue pertaining to the partnership so the PRC can immediately resume accommodating  RT-PCR tests for priority sectors that will be paid for by PhilHealth,” the agency said in a statement.

According to PhilHealth, it has paid PRC a total of P1.6 billion for at least  433,263 laboratory tests as of September 2020.

“PhilHealth failed to meet its obligation amounting to over P930 million as of Oct. 13. One simply cannot turn a blind eye on the impact of receivable amount in the level of PhilHealth’s obligation,” PRC said in a statement.

PRC and state-insurer officials met last September during which PhilHealth president Dante Gierran expressed intention of the agency to pay its obligation.

This article is taken from Philippine Star, CNN Philippines