Friday, July 22, 2005

Those Philhealth cards

You may have heard that President Arroyo will soon decide to continue giving out those Philhealth cards that she distributed during the campaign. If you recall, those cards recently expired (they're just good for a year) and many of the beneficiaries complained because that was about the only good thing that happened to many poor Filipinos during the campaign.

Of course, the decision by Malacanang to continue putting money on the Philhealth card scheme has something to do with the political storm she's facing, particularly in Metro Manila where more and more Filipinos are not exactly fond of her. The Philhealth card may calm them down.

But at the same time, some people in the administration are actually convince that giving out Philhealth cards would have a positive impact on the health-care indsutry. These cards, according to one congressman close to Arroyo, could revitalize private hospitals.

That's fine, except for one thing: It's not sustainable because the government does not have deep pockets. Arroyo's people, of course, don't want to accept that fact because they're willing to try everything at this point just to ensure her political survival.


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