Exhausted na po ang ating Pangulo pero hindi po siya titigil na labanan ang corruption until the last day of his term. Umabot na sa punto na sinabihan niya ako “to talk like an opposition” kapag corruption na ang pinag-uusapan. Hindi siya nagpapapigil at wala siyang pinipili, kakampi man o kalaban. Basta corruption ang isyu, hihiritan at tutuluyan ka niya.

Itong isyu sa PhilHealth, halos taon taon na ito iniimbestigahan ng Senado. Naka ilang palit na rin tayo ng liderato, pang-apat na PhilHealth President na ito, at nagkaroon na rin ng board revamp, pero mukhang nasa loob ng ahensya at sa baba talaga ang problema.

Paano matutulungan ng PhilHealth ang mga Pilipinong kailangan magpagamot kung ang sarili nitong sakit sa loob ng ahensya ay hindi nito magamot?

Huwag naman nating hayaang tuluyang mamatay ang PhilHealth sa panahon na kailangan ng taumbayan ng maayos na serbisyong pangkalusugan. Naniniwala akong meron pa naman diyan na gusto talagang magsilbi with all honesty and integrity kaya hindi ako nawawalan ng pag-asa. Kailangan lang talaga ng mabisang gamot na tatalab talaga upang matanggal ang mga masasamang loob na sumisira sa PhilHealth.

This is why I have recommended to President Rodrigo Duterte to consider the creation of a Task Force to investigate the issues surrounding PhilHealth. The Task Force can be spearheaded by the Department of Justice with the full support of the Office of the Ombudsman, the Commission on Audit, and the Office of the Executive Secretary. The Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission may also be tapped to help out.

Despite the ongoing efforts to reform PhilHealth, it remains to be tainted with allegations of systemic corruption, particularly in the middle to lower levels of its organization. We cannot simply rely on its leadership to cleanse its ranks. We need a ‘whole-of-government’ approach through a Task Force that has enough ‘teeth’ to investigate, audit, prosecute, file charges and put in jail those responsible for these anomalies.

As the President said, let us do everything in our power to, once and for all, put an end to the perennial issues surrounding PhilHealth and cure it from systemic corruption.

Let us give the people a clean and effective PhilHealth that they deserve. Pera ng taumbayan ang bumubuhay sa PhilHealth kaya siguraduhin natin na ni piso ay hindi masayang o manakaw. Ibalik natin ito sa tao sa pamamagitan ng mabilis, maayos, at maaasahang serbisyo mula sa isang gobyernong palaging nagmamalasakit sa bawat Pilipino.

This proposed Task Force will focus on PhilHealth for now, but can eventually cover other agencies with issues of systemic corruption. Hindi lang naman po PhilHealth ang may problema, alam natin na may iba pang mga ahensya dyan na kailangang gamutin para tuluyang matanggal ang corruption sa kanilang sistema.”

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