Filtered By: Topstories

New PhilHealth chief urged to adopt digital strategies to make health care accessible

Newly appointed Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) president Emmanuel Ledesma should adopt digital innovation to ensure accessible and speedy provision of medical insurance and health care services for Filipinos, a lawmaker said Thursday.

Davao City Representative Paolo Duterte issued the statement in light of his House Bill 4808 which seeks to establish digital-based system designed to complement and improve the delivery of physical healthcare services.

“We need to reimagine the way we bring quality health care to our countrymen, especially to those living in geographically isolated and disadvantaged areas (GIDAs) where medical professionals are scarce. The use of digital technology can help in early detection of symptoms in patients and save lives,” Duterte said.

PhilHealth’s Ledesma, Duterte said, can start by allowing the use of more convenient online payment platforms such as e-wallets in settling Philhealth premiums and expanding coverage of Philhealth’s e-Konsulta system, which is a web-based application that can be used to encode patient data and medical records.

The  eKonsulta, Duterte said, can be incorporated into the proposed  National eHealth System (NeHS) under House Bill 4808 which also covers the use of e-prescriptions, e-pharmacies, and telemedicine.

“One important aspect of the NeHS is that it will operate within a health sector blueprint that ensures health and health-related data are made available and accessible anytime and anywhere to various stakeholders, including medical experts and researchers who can monitor outbreaks and  help prevent the spread of diseases,” he said.

Duterte’s proposed bill mandates the Department of Health (DOH)  to transform and strengthen its existing Knowledge Management and Information Technology Service (KMITS) into a full-fledged National eHealth Information and Services Bureau (NeHISB).

The bureau will then perform the overall management and administration of the NeHS.

Likewise, the bureau will serve as the secretariat of the DOH-chaired eHealth Policy and Coordinating Council which is tasked under the bill to provide and promote relevant policies and guidelines to effectively implement the NeHS.—Llanesca Panti/AOL, GMA Integrated News