Monday, November 21, 2016

PhilHealth Strengthens Frontline Services

In line with President Rodrigo Duterte’s call for transparency, faster transactions and customer satisfaction in the government service, the state-run health insurer is continuously improving its frontline services for the benefit of its 93 million members and their dependents.

Service delivery infrastructure

Seventeen (17) Regional Offices, five (5) Branches and 101 Local Health Insurance Offices (LHIOs) strategically located nationwide enable the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to immediately attend to the needs of its members, whether these are membership or benefit availment concerns. To further extend its service availability, service desks were put up inside the malls, making PhilHealth one of the few government agencies that have done so. From eleven (11) PhilHealth Express outlets in 2012, the number grew to 63. Today, these Expresses are now located not only inside malls but in municipal or city halls, hospitals, city public libraries and in other areas with high volume of foot traffic. 

Interestingly, some of the LHIOs provided additional facilities for members. Breastfeeding corners, diaper changing room, prayer room and kiddie nooks for children are provided for the convenience of the members who need to attend to their children while transacting business with PhilHealth, truly an innovative way of demonstrating understanding of its members’ needs. 

As an affirmation of the quality of service being rendered by PhilHealth’s frontline personnel, no less than the Civil Service Commission has repeatedly recognized PhilHealth’s efforts to serve its clientele. There is a 17% increase in the offices were conferred with Excellent Ratings.  From 66 PhilHealth offices in 2014, 88 offices nationwide were conferred with Excellent Ratings in the 2015 Anti-Red Tape Survey.  Fifteen offices were also awarded with the CSC’s Seal of Excellence award in 2014. 

Point-of-service

To stay even more relevant, PhilHealth made sure that its presence was felt where it is most needed.  It stationed 585 proficient registered nurses in several Levels 2 and 3 hospitals nationwide to address queries and assist members in availing themselves of their benefits. Known as the  PhilHealth CARES (Customer Assistance, Relations and Empowerment Staff), these nurses also proactively provide information updates to patients, conduct exit surveys and make the member experience at point-of-service  truly pleasant.

This initiative won the ASEAN Social Security Association Transformation and Customer Service Excellence award in the 2016 ASSA Board Meeting and the Philippine Government Best Practice Competition organized by the Development Academy of the Philippines last 2015.
 
Action via offline, online and social media 

In tandem with efforts to beef up its physical presence and infrastructure set-up in strategic areas, PhilHealth also opened its doors to offline and online customer management. Through its Corporate Action Center (CAC), PhilHealth is able to swiftly act on member inquiries, comments, suggestions and complaints received primarily through (02) 441-7442. Electronic mails received through actioncenter@philhealth.gov.ph  are also immediately addressed, monitored and analyzed to ensure that customer satisfaction is achieved.  

Keeping PhilHealth’s Social Media Unit and CAC busy are the numerous inquiries posted by millennials and technology-savvy members on its official Facebook page: www.facebook.com/PhilHealth and Twitter account: @teamphilhealth. 

Walk-in clients and referrals from different offices are also attended to by competent CAC staff, while members’ feedbacks received through other platforms or through the President’s Hotline 8888 are being welcomed with as much enthusiasm by the CAC personnel.

Two website innovations introduced last year are still being heavily used by PhilHealth members needing immediate information about their coverage.  The All Case Rates Search Engine enables members and non-members to easily search for the amount of benefit that PhilHealth pays for a certain compensable medical or surgical condition. The search engine facility is particularly useful for members who do not have the luxury of time to call the PhilHealth office for their information needs.

On the other hand, the Member Inquiry facility allows members to check on their membership information and posted premium contributions, a pro-active move that aims to prompt members to update their membership records, as well.

Members may also refer to www.philhealth.gov.ph for information about PhilHealth, from membership, benefits, policies, contributions and updates. 

Indeed, there is no stopping PhilHealth, where pleasing its customers is concerned.  With the trust and confidence bestowed on it by its 93 million members over the last 21 years, it will definitely continue to uphold the highest quality of  public service that its members so well deserve. (END)  

Reference:  Dr. Israel Francis A. Pargas
                   OIC-Vice President, Corporate Affairs Group
                   0915-6450808

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