DAVAO CITY – The costs of implanting a matchstick-sized tube that inhibits ovulation among women for three years is now covered by the government’s national health insurance program.
In a statement Wednesday, February 3, the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) said members who wish to undergo the contraceptive subdermal implant procedure may file for benefits.
The procedure, called Philhealth Subdermal Contraceptive Implant Package, costs P3,000. It covers the entire procedure, from pre and post counselling, drugs and supplies, professional and health care institution fees.
“Only benefits availed from accredited and trained providers shall be reimbursed,” Philhealth said in a circular issued in December 2015.
As such, reimbursement shall only be granted if Philhealth members went through the said procedure in hospitals, primary care facilities, birthing homes or maternity clinics, and ambulatory surgical clinics accredited by the agency.
“The procedure must be performed by accredited professionals who have acquired a Certificate of Training from DOH (Department of Health),” it added.
Hospitals may be charging more than the prescribed fee, but Philhealth assured that members belonging under the Indigent and Kasambahay category shall be covered by the No Balance Billing policy (NBB).
NBB, according to Philhealth, is a policy that mandates hospitals not to charge specific government insurance members of other fees apart from the rates prescribed in the package payment scheme.
Since January this year, Philhealth has began covering the package which can be availed every 730 days
The package involves inserting a contraceptive device under the skin of the woman’s upper arm, producing progestin-only hormones that inhibit ovulation and prevent pregnancy for three years.
Philhealth said the procedure is also known for its rapid reversability, meaning women can soon start ovulating once the device is removed from their body. (with reports from Mick Basa / DavaoToday.com)