Photo Release

October 20, 2021

On judicious spending of off-budget accounts: Sen. Panfilo Lacson notes the low utilization rate of programmed expenditures based on programmed receipts from 2017 to 2018. Lacson, during the continuation of the virtual hearing on the proposed 2022 budget of the Department of Health (DOH) and its attached agencies Wednesday, October 20, 2021, said the DOH has programmed receipts, or expected earnings of DOH-retained hospitals every year, and based on that earnings, the department outlined programmed expenditures. The senator noted that in 2017, there was a year-end balance of P13.38 billion; P9.1 billion in 2018; P10.5 billion in 2019; and, P12.4 billion in 2020. For four years, the total balance stood at P45.45 billion or an average of 33.8 percent utilization rate. “I would just like to clarify that what we want is to have a judicious spending, especially for humanitarian consideration... why don't we just maximize the utilization of retained earnings or the so-called receipts so that patients in government hospitals could benefit from it,” Lacson said, even as he asked the status of the P45.45 billion balance. Health Sec. Francisco Duque III explained that the P45.45 billion is the retained income of the hospitals. He also agreed this should not be happening because many patients need assistance from these hospitals. (Screen grab/Senate PRIB)