MANILA - Apart from ensuring health services for all Filipinos, the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Bill recently passed in the House of Representatives may increase the country's gross domestic product (GDP) by 4 to 6 percent once enacted, a global healthcare service provider said Thursday.
Passing of the UHC bill will generate wealth as the country moves to invest in equipment, drugs and pharmaceuticals and employ more doctors and nurses, Mark Britnell, chairman of KPMG Health Practice told ANC’s Market Edge with Cathy Yang.
“No country in the world that adopted the universal healthcare has made that country poorer. I feel you’re ready to take that challenge head on and, if you do, I think you’ll have better economic prosperity, and better well-being for your population,” Britnell added.
The House of Representatives just passed the UHC Bill in September. A counterpart bill is pending at the Senate.
Britnell said South Korea was able to do it in 12 years, while it could take 20 years for the Philippines to put the universal healthcare system in place. Still, he is optimistic that primary care services will be in place within five years.
Britnell also expressed his enthusiasm over the government’s streamlined efforts to pass the UHC Bill compared to his last visit 3 years ago.
“People have a sense of pride, a sense of optimism, a can-do attitude and I feel the atmosphere is palpably different,” Britnell said.