PhilHealth to Expand Hemodialysis Coverage This Year

IMG Credit: The Ruth Foundation for Palliative and Hospice Care

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) targets to increase its coverage for outpatient hemodialysis before August this year, from 90 sessions to 156 sessions.

“This increase in the number of sessions covered is based on standards for adequate dialysis which requires three four-hour sessions every week for chronic kidney disease Stage 5 patients,” PhilHealth President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel Ledesma Jr. said.

He also said that they recognize the yearly ordeal dialysis patients go through, and that this is part of their commitment to implement enhancements in the benefit packages for 2023.

Since the current policy’s sessions may run only until August, PhilHealth Senior Vice President Israel Francis Pargas said they are working to issue the new policy officially before the 90-session coverage ends.

“So, we have the time until the second sem to make sure na ‘yung 156 mailabas natin (that we can release the 156 [sessions]),” Pargas said.

Ledesma encouraged concerned members to avail of other renal replacement therapy (RRT) offers “to achieve better quality of life”.

“PhilHealth is providing PHP270,000 in financial support to patients who are on peritoneal dialysis or what we call PD-First,” Ledesma said.

“And for those who have organ donors, PhilHealth pays PHP600,000 for renal patients qualified under our Z benefits for kidney transplantation,” he added.

Meanwhile, Senior Citizen Party-list Representative Rodolfo Ordanes proposed that senior citizens be included as beneficiaries of the free dialysis treatment in the committee-approved version of the proposed Comprehensive Renal Replacement Therapy (RRT) Act.

According to Ordanes, the proposal provides sets of policies on kidney transplantation, peritoneal dialysis and hemodialysis, including making these therapies affordable to all seniors and indigents and expanding the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) transplant benefit package.

“In the bill, the PhilHealth transplant package covers both patient and prospective organ donor, so they do not have to worry about the cost of tests and the transplant,” Ordanes said.

-Based on reports by The Philippine News Agency

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