By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia yesterday said he supports the recently-signed RA 10932, which strengthens the Anti-Hospital Deposit Law, prohibiting hospitals from requesting payment as a prerequisite to administering treatment.
“Necessity knows no rules and I think human life is not subject to the commerce of man,” he said. “If a hospital refuses to serve or assist a patient, that should really be considered criminal.”
Leonardia also said hospitals should be forced to accept patients even if they do not have the money, noting the Philippines being an impoverished country.
“Even those who have money cannot even pay immediately because they still have to withdraw from the bank,” Leonardia added.
Earlier this month, President Rodrigo Duterte signed the bill into law, making it unlawful for any hospital or medical clinic to request, solicit, demand, accept any deposit, or any other form of advance payment as prerequisite for administering basic emergency care or providing confinement for medical treatment; or to refuse to administer medical treatment and support to any patient.
Under the new law, any official, medical practitioner, or employee of the hospital or medical clinic who violates the provisions of the law may face up to two years and four months behind bars or fined up to P300,000, or both./WDJ