Free yearly medical check-ups could soon be provided to Filipinos under a new bill, which is now on its third reading in the House of Representatives. 

Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund Villafuerte, one of the proponents of the Free Annual Medical Check-up Act (HB 9072), said the bill will enable the public to get medical check-ups free of charge from any government hospital and institution. 

“Every Filipino should be entitled to this medical service to ensure that the goal of the Universal Health Care (UHC) law of equitable access to quality health care is fulfilled,” Villafuerte explained.

Under HB 9072, all Filipinos, who are members of the Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth), will be entitled to benefits under a Philippine Health Insurance Program.

Apart from the check-up, the free services could be expanded to other tests such as blood sugar and cholesterol tests and other laboratory tests, which will rely heavily on PhilHealth’s available funding. 

“To promote health, identify risks, and ensure early diagnosis, PhilHealth shall establish a system that allows access to a free annual medical check-up and ensure that Filipinos shall be accorded the quality health care services that they deserve,” the bill read. 

Once approved, the Department of Health (DOH) will be tasked to coordinate with PhilHealth to publicize the free services. 

The bill has been sent to the Senate after passing the Congress.

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Image credit: Rouelle Umali / Xinhua via Getty Images