By Analou De Vera
The families of 25 healthcare workers who died of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have so far received their P1 million death benefit, the Department of Health (DOH) clarified on Sunday (June 7).
“All 32 checks have been prepared already. Of these, 25 have been received by the families, five have final pending documents such as SPA (special power of attorney) before they can receive the checks,” the DOH said.
“The two remaining families, on the other hand, have heirs outside the country, so they can’t immediately facilitate the process and have to confirm other relatives who will receive on their behalf,” it added.
The figure was in contrast to the pronouncement of Health Undersecretary Dr.Maria Rosario Vergeire in the “Laging Handa” press briefing last Saturday, saying the families of 29 out of 32 healthcare workers have received the death benefit.
The DOH said that upon “further checking,” they have only delivered 25 checks as of Sunday afternoon, as some beneficiaries still lack the necessary documents to claim the benefit.
The Health department also said 42 healthcare workers who got severely ill due to COVID-19 will receive P100,000. Previously, the DOH said there are 79 healthcare workers who will receive the monetary aid.
“Ten checks out of 42 cases have been prepared. We are validating the 42 cases following submission of medical abstract,” the DOH said.
“There are some instances where patients are included in the severe list but their medical abstracts do not reflect this upon verification. Hence, they are ‘delisted’ and the list of claimants become shorter,” it added.
The cash assistance to affected healthcare workers is mandated under the Republic Act No. 11469 or the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act.
President Duterte gave the DOH until Tuesday (June 9) to give the benefits to the concerned beneficiaries, and Health Secretary Francisco Duque III vowed that they will comply.