BREAST cancer treatments and kidney transplants can now be availed by PhilHealth members at the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC).
The PhilHealth case Type Z package entitles patients suffering from breast cancer, end-stage renal failure, leukemia for children, and prostate cancer for adults to avail of state subsidized medical care.
The VSMMC is recognized by PhilHealth to be capable in meeting the package cost and has the required treatment facilities in providing medical service for both kidney transplant and breast cancer treatment, said PhilHealth Healthcare Delivery Management Division chief Dr. Francis Javier.
Under Philhealth’s Type Z package, breast cancer patients get a P100,000 subsidy while kidney transplant is subsidized by P600,000, Javier added.
The renal disease assistance is however limited to the surgical procedure for the moment. But PhilHealth is looking at covering even the post-operation interventions in the future, he said.
The fact that VSMCC was chosen for the package means the hospital “has been doing its job proactively,” Regional Director Dr. Asuncion Anden of the Department of Health (DOH) said.
Membership status dictates the level of subsidy as sponsored members fall under the “no balance billing” category.
This meant that they don’t pay a single centavo while employed members pay the excess amount under the fixed reimbursement system, Anden said.
Dr. Gerardo Aquino, VSMMC chief of hospital, credited programs and facilities that VSMMC has before the implementation of the latest package.
“We are the first government hospital outside Metro Manila to have conducted kidney transplant and we have a breast center, our one stop shop for breast cancer with diagnosis and treatment in one place,” Aquino said.
A total of 51 kidney transplants were done in VSMMC since 2006.
But the hospital chief said the hospital will be challenged in coping with the increased number of patients availing of this new PhilHealth package.
Dr. Aquino said it remains a challenge since the government hospital is still filled to over-capacity with patients, whom they cannot turn down for treatment and examination. /Jessa J. Agua, Correspondent