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Marcos orders PhilHealth to suspend premium rate increase

Marcos orders PhilHealth to suspend premium rate increase

President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. has ordered the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to suspend the increase of premium rate for the calendar year 2023.

This was confirmed by the Office of the Press Secretary and the Office of the Executive Secretary.

A memorandum, signed by Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin, referred to the scheduled increase of the premium rate from 4% to 4.5%, and income ceiling from 80,000 to 90,000 for CY 2023 under Section 10 of Republic Act No. 11223.

“In light of the prevailing socioeconomic challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, and to provide financial relief to our countrymen amidst these difficult times, please be informed that the President has directed PhilHealth to suspend the above mentioned increase in premium rate and income ceiling for CY 2023, subject to applicable laws, rules, and regulations,” the memorandum read.

If one earns P10,000 monthly, his or her P400 contribution will increase to P450. The contribution is divided between the employer and the employee.

“The increase in contribution will help fund additional benefits that we are crafting now,” PhilHealth spokesperson Dr. Shirley Domingo had said. 

The Department of Health  (DOH) and PhilHealth said the PhilHealth board would discuss the suspension of the scheduled rate increase.

“The DOH and PhilHealth recognize the suspension is intended to help our kababayans cope with the increasing prices of commodities caused by inflation,” the agencies said in a press statement.

“Such moratoriums in increases in premium contributions have been done in years 2020 and 2021. This was in accordance with directives of the Office of the President, and in recognition of the effects of the pandemic during those years,” they said.