MANILA – Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra on Tuesday said the task force probing the reported anomalies in the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) recommended to President Rodrigo Duterte to place the state insurer under an interim management committee.
“We thought of an interim management committee for PhilHealth in view of the apparent systemic problems that will be difficult to resolve if the people who have an interest to keep the present structure and systems will remain in their present positions,” Guevarra told newsmen.
Guevarra said the Governance Commission for Government Owned and Controlled Corporations (GCG), which is under the Office of the President, has the statutory mandate to institute organizational changes in GOCCs.
“So, we are recommending to the President that the GCG be directed to consider this measure, among others, as part of overall efforts to strengthen PhilHealth. The details, such as who will comprise such interim management committee, their terms of reference, etc. will be determined by the GCG itself,” Guevarra said.
During Tuesday’s cabinet briefing and televised press conference with Duterte, Guevarra, who heads the Task Force PhilHealth, said part of the problem was the lack of a centralized IT (information technology) system to keep track of its accounts and transactions.
He added that they are seeking the completion of all pending investigations into lapses which were started within PhilHealth even before Duterte ordered the creation of Task Force PhilHealth.
Last Monday, PhilHealth senior vice president (SVP) for the legal sector Rodolfo del Rosario Jr. and SVP for finance policy management Dr. Israel Pargas appeared before the task force.
Justice Undersecretary Markk Perete said del Rosario was questioned, among other things, on the pending claims including around PHP3.9 billion in claims. (PNA)