Thursday, March 19, 2015

One-Stop Online Portal for OFWs Now Features PhilHealth Benefits and Services


OVERSEAS Filipino workers now have additional avenues through which they may learn more about their health care coverage under the National Health Insurance Program (NHIP).

Through an agreement signed between the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) and the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO), OFWs may now access a one-stop online portal to get the latest updates, advisories, features and other information materials pertaining to their PhilHealth membership.


The tie-up calls on both institutions to promote information sharing where the health care of OFWs is concerned. BaLinkBayan, a website earlier created to engage overseas Filipinos in a diaspora-driven engagement, is expected to host updated news materials that will be of interest to the OFW-members of PhilHealth. It can be accessed throughwww.balinkbayan.gov.ph.
At the same time, PhilHealth and CFO agreed to make their website links and social networking sites available for overseas Filipinos through BaLinkBayan for the regular posting of PhilHealth program advisories, newsletters, e-mail blasts and press releases.
The CFO shall also designate and deputize persons locally and abroad to assist PhilHealth in its information and education campaign so that OFWs and their qualified dependents may easily and effectively react to or connect with PhilHealth on NHIP concerns.
Alexander A. Padilla, PhilHealth President and CEO emphasized the importance of the partnership saying that “with this project, we can be assured that online communications are maintained and made readily available for OFWs.”
CFO Chairperson Secretary Imelda M. Nicolas also acknowledged the partnership. “I’m very happy to have signed this agreement between the Commission on Filipinos Overseas and PhilHealth because currently, we already have 10.5 million Overseas Filipinos and since the family size of the Filipino family is five, we are really talking to 50 million Filipinos that could be covered by PhilHealth.”
She added that “...the best way to communicate to them is through the website, through the internet, and that is what we are offering - the BaLinkBayan which is a combination of the word Balikbayan and Link which means Internet connection. And as I said maganda ang aming samahan, this partnership is very good it has a synergy and I look forward to the attainment of universal health here in the Philippines and for overseas Filipinos.”
The CFO is an attached agency of the Office of the President of the Philippines and is mandated to strengthen ties between and among overseas Filipinos, as well as to promote their interests in the country and overseas. It has taken on a more pro-active role for and with overseas Filipinos who are either working temporarily or residing permanently in other countries.