Garin denies diversion of P10.6B PhilHealth funds

Published May 30, 2018, 7:10 PM

by Roel Tibay

By Analou De Vera

Former Health secretary Janette Garin denied the allegations that the P10.6 billion Philhealth fund intended for senior citizens were diverted to the Department of Health.

Health secretary Janette Garin  gives an update on Zika virus during a press con after the launch of Bayani ng Kalusugan Awards at the Century Park Hotel in Malate, Manila on Tuesday. (JOHN JEROME GANZON)
Health secretary Janette Garin (JOHN JEROME GANZON)

“Hindi po totoo na nag request kami ng transfer of funds. (It is not true that we requested for a transfer of funds)
In the first place there was no fund in Philhealth to the amount of P10.6 billion,” said Garin during a radio interview on Wednesday.

“I-korek ko lang po, hindi po totoo na nagkaroon ng diversion, hindi po iyon madaling gawin at hindi ko po iyon gagawin,” she added.

[ I just want to correct it… there was no diversion, it is not easy and I would not do that.]

Garin said that during her stint as Health secretary, her department as well as the Philhealth had been supportive of the senior citizens.

“In fact, nung nasa DOH ako, nung nasa Philhealth nga po kami at kasama na po ako doon ay talagang binigyan namin yung mga pangangailangan ng senior citizens,” she said.

[In fact when I was still at the DOH and we were at Philhealth, we were giving all the needs of the senior citizens.]

The former health secretary said that it is not right that she and the previous administration are being blamed in the controversy.

“Bottom line is kailangan natin alagaan yung senior citizens pero kailangan din natin alagaan yung Philhealth. Hindi po makatarungan na ipinagbintang sa amin at sa nakaraang administration yung financial mess na kung nasaan ang Philhealth ngayon,” Garin said.

[Bottomline is we need to take good care of our senior citizens as well as Philhealth. It is unfair that it is being blamed on [me] and to the previous administration the financial mess that the Philhealth is now experiencing.]

Garin is also facing controversy after she implemented the dengue immunization program using Sanofi Pasteur’s Dengvaxia vaccine, which later on found that it might pose potential health risk to those not previously infected by dengue virus.