Universal Health Care funding continues despite gaming suspension: finance official

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 29 2019 09:53 AM | Updated as of Jul 29 2019 10:50 AM

A child diagnosed with dengue sits on a lap of a loved one on a bed setup at General Emilio Aguinaldo Memorial Hospital’s pediatric ward hallway in Trece Martires, Cavite on July 26, 2019. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News

MANILA – The suspension of gaming operations due to alleged corruption in the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office will have little impact on funding for universal health care, a finance official said Monday.

The PCSO was projected to contribute P3 billion to the P257 billion budget for the implementation of the Universal Health Care Law this year and P16.6 billion to the P1.47 trillion over a 5-year period, said Finance Assistant Secretary Tony Lambino.

Funding for the UHC, which aims to expand medicine and primary conditions healthcare coverage for Filipinos, will come from the national budget, PhilHealth contributions, the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp, aside from the PCSO, Lambino told ANC.

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"The PCSO component is actually the smallest. What we’re doing is we’re focusing our efforts on the new sin tax package that will cover alcohol and e-cigarettes," Lambino said.

President Rodrigo Duterte ordered Lotto, Peryahan ng Bayan, small town lottery and Keno shut due to alleged “massive corruption” at the state lottery agency.

Duterte on Wednesday signed a law raising excise taxes on tobacco products, which will also help fund the UHC.