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Learning from Cuba and the United Kingdom: Towards Building a Universal National Health Services (NHS) for the Philippines

This policy brief intends to do the following: describe how the current public health care system in the Philippines failed to reduce healthcare-related out-of-pocket payments (OOPPs) for many citizens; present data on PhilHealth's unstable financial situation which limits the public insurance system's capacity to finance free health care; and outline a Cuban- & UK-inspired practical plan to build a Philippine National Health Services (NHS). The proposed recommendations seek to provide 100% free health care to all citizens through a three-pronged approach: increasing national government expenditure on health care; optimizing PhilHealth's collection efficiency and corruption prevention and transitioning towards a fully public health care system. The proposed policy action will re channel all premium payments to the public health care system where PhilHealth's support value is demonstrably more maximized and beneficial. The prescriptions aim to reduce co-payments or huge OOPPs which would enable a universal, accessible, and inclusive public health system.


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