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DOH-7, Philhealth reiterate kidney care

DOH7 Medical Officer IV, Non Communicable Disease Section, Dr. Jera Armendarez and Philhealth 7 Medical Specialist, Benefits Administration Section, Dr. Avril Tiu during the Kapihan sa PIA on June 21, 2023

CEBU CITY, Cebu, July 4 (PIA) -- The Department of Health (DOH) and the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) reiterated the importance of taking care of the kidneys in time for the observation of National Kidney Month this July.

DOH-7 Medical Officer IV Dr. Jera Armendarez disclosed during the Kapihan sa PIA on June 21 that the National Kidney Month observance aims to raise awareness on how to prevent kidney diseases.

Although Chronic Kidney Diseases (CKD) remains to be one of the leading causes of death in the country, it is preventable, said Dr. Armendarez.

“Basic screening on sugar, cholesterol level, and yearly check-ups should be practiced for early detection because CKD is non-reversible,” she said.

Modification of diet, avoiding smoking and alcoholic drinks, adequate exercise, and drinking enough water helps prevent CKD.

In 2021, CKD ranked fourth among the top diseases in the Philippines.

Age, heredity, hypertension, and diabetes are some of the risk factors for kidney ailments.

Worldwide, there are about 800 million people suffering from CKD, of which 7 million cases are from the Philippines.

Dr. Armendarez said DOH is extending technical assistance to local government units (LGUs) through symposiums and talks on how to avoid CKD.

DOH also provides sugar tests and basic screening in rural health centers as requested by the LGUs.

Philhealth benefits

For patients with CKD, Philhealth-7 Medical Specialist of the Benefits Administration Section, Dr. Avril Tiu, said Philhealth offers a coverage for hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis, and kidney transplant.

Dr. Tiu said the coverage for hemodialysis is at P2,600 per session inclusive of professional fee in Philhealth-accredited hospitals.

The peritoneal dialysis, which falls under the Z benefit package, has a coverage of P270,000 and are is only given in contracted Z benefit facilities.

Kidney transplant cases have a coverage of P600,000 which also falls under the Z benefit package.

He also stressed the importance of CKD patients enrolling in the dialysis database and for Philhealth members to continue their monthly contributions.

Contracted Z benefit facilities in Region 7 for peritoneal dialysis are in the Cebu South Medical Center in Talisay City, Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) in Cebu City, and Governor Celestino Galleres Hospital in Bohol.

Only VSMMC is accredited for kidney transplant cases under the said benefit package. (MYP/PIA7 Cebu)

About the Author

Myrtle Pasigan

Information Officer

Region 7

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