Is PhilHealth Worth It?

Is PhilHealth Worth It?

Is PhilHealth Worth It?

(Updated 5 March 2020)

I have probably had this question, “Is PhilHealth Worth It?” repeatedly asked more than a hundred times since I moved to the Philippines, full-time, in 2006.

My answer is almost always a resounding yes, but a great many ex-pats will tend to disagree with me. This opinion generally seems from the attitude of most North Americans (at least those who actually even bother to HAVE health insurance) that to be worth anything. health insurance has to cover all expenses.  PhilHealth does NOT cover all costs involved with every sickness or surgery, but it is one hell of a lot better than having no health insurance at all … and when you get sick (not IF, but WHEN) you’ll be damn glad to have it.

Is PhilHealth Worth It?
Click To Visit the PhilHealth site

PhilHealth is the Philippine government’s National Health Insurance Program.  It is a commercial corporation owned and backed by the government of the Philippines… similar in many ways to the US Postal Service.

Facts About PhilHealth:

It is for Filipino citizens only.

This is FALSE.  Philhealth is available to everyone in the Philippines, Filipino or foreign.married or single.

PhilHealth Is Worthless Because It Doesn’t Pay Everything.

This is FALSE. PhilHealth does not pay for outpatient care, such as visits to your doctor’s office. It also does not pay for prescriptions.  But if you have to be hospitalized, especially for an operation (which can cost thousands of dollars US), it’s really hard to beat the benefits of PhilHealth.

I’m Living On A Fixed Income, PhilHealth Costs Too Much.

This is just patent NONSENSE.  For most members, the cost of PhilHealth is only P3600 a year.   That works out to less than $6.00 a month … or, perhaps 5 or 6 San Miguel’s.  If you wake up one morning to the pain like my colleague Dave describes below, you’re surely going to wish you had skipped a couple of beers in the interest of your continued breathing.

Even if you are in the category of foreigners who have to pay the whopping P15,000 per year, remember that’s less than $25 a month … and when you need it (again, when, not if) you will get back more than you paid in, for sure.

Trust Me, I Have 20 Years Experience On This

I’ve lost count of the number of family members who have been hi=sopitalized over the years I have lived here in the Philippines.  I have often “helped” with the costs of settling their bills and getting them released from the hospital.

PhilHealth has always contributed, often a substantial amount, like P20,000 or P30,000 or even P40,00.

There is always an additional balance due for items PhilHealth didn’t cover, but if you think about getting back P30,000 for an investment of P3600a year, it sounds like a pretty solid investment to me.

Here’s a Real-World, Up To Date Review Of How PhilHealth helped This Ex-pat.

Go read it, I’ll wait right here for you.

So now that you have heard exactly how PhilHealth helped mu colleague Dave, tight now in 2020, what do you think?

Is PhilHealth Worth It?

6 thoughts on “Is PhilHealth Worth It?”

  1. Great info from “The Kano”, you guys are 100% correct, not “IF”, but “WHEN”. Talking with Asawa and will be heading to PhilHealth Local Office sooner than later. She is automatic as Senior and I was for a minute till that got changed. . . (Dependent of Senior – Foreigner)!

    1. @ Terrence Michalski

      Hi Terry, long time no see. Delighted to see you are still around. I’ve been very neglectful of the blog lately, but when I saw that article about Dave Dewall’s experience, I just had to get busy and let any of the three readers I have left know. If I help just one person stay healthy and get the care they need it ill certainly be worth it. Be well.

  2. I tried to sign up for PhilHealth but was told i am not eligible as my age is over 69.

    1. @ Ian

      Thanks for sharing that, Ian. I was not aware of an age restriction. You’ll find a lot of age restrictions in the Philippines that will sound insane or even illegal to foreigners. Just one of those things you have o deal with in another country I guess. Be well.

    1. @ Kevin

      Hey, buddy, nice to see you. Indeed PhilHealth is well worth it if somebody gets sick, or has an accident. People just don’t realize how fast an accident can happen. A friend of mine who is just into his 50’s, has told me many times how he feels health insurance is not worth it for someone still young and in good health. Of course, it’s not worth it _IF_ you never need it.

      My friend’s 74yo dad came here for a visit and loved the Philippines. On the day he was going to the airport to fly out, he crossed a bys street and a bus, driving the wrong way and not looking smacked him … 12 weeks in the hospital and thousands and thousands in expenses.

      It will take my friend and his dad years and years to pay the bills. One second the sun is shining and everything is rosy, a second later you’re fighting for your very life, through no fault of your own.

      Anyway, be well, Kevin, all the best to your family too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.