GORDON WANTS LAWS AMENDED TO OBVIATE SIMILAR HEALTH SCAMS
In the wake of the multi-million peso "ghost dialysis" controversy that rocked the Philippine Health Insurance Company or PhilHealth, Senator Richard J. Gordon said he is looking into the possibility of amending laws to obviate similar health scams from being perpetrated.
Gordon, who was completely devastated because the very officials of the PhilHealth, themselves, are in collusion with unscrupulous health providers to embezzle funds from the health corporation, expressed apprehension that they might also do this with the Universal Health Care which will be funded from the recently approved Sin Tax bill.
"I'm completely devastated by this. The Congress of the Republic of the Philippines recently passed the Sin tax bill, which will fund the Universal Health Care, now we're seeing our own people are cheating. To me that is very serious. Humihingi tayo ng tulong sa tao, sa gobyerno tapos pag nagbigay ang gobyerno, dadayain ang sistema. There's something wrong there. Have we lost our moral compass? Pati ito dadayain, Biruin mo 90 sessions lang ng dialysis ang sagot ng PhilHealth, yung iba babayaran na nila. Tapos nanakawan mo pa, kawawa naman ang mga tao," he bewailed.
Hence, the chairman of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee, said the perpetrators must be held accountable for a higher degree of due diligence and penalties, adding, though, that to be fair to the present PhilHealth officials, a lot of investigations have been made even in the past such as the cataract scam.
However, Gordon is not immediately leaping into an investigation into the controversy as he is still awaiting where President Rodrigo R. Duterte's actions will lead to.
"It's important that we look into that (amending laws). I will religiously look at what's going on. I'm not immediately jumping into an investigation because I'm still waiting where the President's actions, which have been good so far, will go. I'm glad the President immediately acted by having Sy (Bryan Sy, owner and vice president of WellMed Dialysis Center) and the other one arrested," he said.
Aside from having Sy arrested, Duterte also ordered PhilHealth president Roy Ferrer and Philhealth's board members to submit their courtesy resignations in the wake of the multi-million peso ghost kidney treatments.
Gordon also underscored the importance of checking the integrity of people or organizations wanting to open up a dialysis center because a dialysis center is not a purely for profit business.
"Dapat tingnan natin, bago magtayo ng dialysis center, yung integrity ng mga taong magtatayo nun. It is not supposedly a purely for profit enterprise. There's got to be responsibility in running a dialysis system. The Philippine Red Cross has put up one and I'm very, very careful about it," he said.