Leyte 2nd district board member Anlie Apostol. isumat.com
Leyte 2nd district board member Anlie Apostol. isumat.com

TACLOBAN CITY, -– The Leyte provincial board is now deliberating an ordinance that seeks a 50 percent to 500 percent fee increase in hospitals managed by the provincial government.

The proposal entitled as an “Ordinance Adopting Standard Rates of Fees/Charges on Services Rendered by the Different Hospitals under/operated by the Provincial Government of Leyte”, authored by Board Member Anlie Apostol has already been approved on its first and second reading.

It will have to undergo a public hearing to inform the public about said increase before its approval on the third and final reading.

Apostol, who heads the committee on health, explained that the increase of fee is a way maximizes the “zero balance billing” imposed by the Department of Health (DOH) through the Philippines Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth).

Leyte province has 14 community and district hospitals under its watch. The biggest is the Leyte Provincial Hospital in Palo town.

Vice-Governor Carlo Loreto said the ordinance, once approved, will ensure the sustainability of services provided by hospital personnel to patients.

“This ordinance is important because we cannot collect fee not unless it is supported by law,” Loreto explained.

“For the services to continue, we need to collect fee to those who are capable to pay hospital bills,” said Loreto.

Leyte Vice Governor Carlo P. Loreto.
Leyte Vice Governor Carlo P. Loreto.

He added that although the local ordinance will lead to fee adjustment for services of local government-run hospitals, it will not affect the services to indigent families since they are not covered by service fee hike as stipulated in the 2005 ordinance.

Hospitals being run by the provincial government do not only provide medical services to residents of Leyte, but also to patients coming from other provinces. (PNA)