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Journalist pa man din! Netizens call Maria Ressa an idiot for belittling SPMC as ‘Davao hospital’

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Rappler founder and CEO Maria Ressa is drawing flak on social media for calling the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) a “Davao hospital” which got the lion’s share of Philhealth’s advance payments to hospitals for COVID-19 cases.

Ressa tweeted Wednesday (August 12): “Seriously? A Davao hospital receives more than PGH? #CourageON #HoldTheLine.” Her tweet was accompanied by a link to a screenshot of the presentation shown at the Senate committee of the whole’s hearing on Tuesday (August 11) showing the top 10 hospitals which got the biggest disbursements from Philhealth’s Interim Reimbursement Mechanism (IRM).

SPMC, which is in Davao City, received P326 million while the University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital (UP-PGH) got P263 million.

Netizens pointed out that there’s nothing wrong with SPMC getting a huge chunk of Philhealth’s IRM fund because it is the largest government-run hospital in the country, according to the Department of Health (DOH).

Twitter user @iagenato said: “Idiota Ressa. SPMC IS THE largest hospital in the country. Add to it its cancer center heart center and kidney institute. Plus the whole of mindanao is catered by this hospital. Patients as far as the visayas go to this hospital because of its good doctors and consultants…”

Netizen @SydalgladysmaeB said it was high time funds are poured into healthcare for Mindanao.

“Maria rissa attacking SPMC for putting much attention ng preisdente Hello @mariaressa sa tagal ng panahon wlang imik ang visayas at mindanao. Kasi laging priority ang luzon ng previous admin may narinig bh kayo?”

Physician Tweetie Mori shared an anecdote from a colleague, who said SPMC utilized the funds from Philhealth efficiently for COVID-19 cases.

“SPMC was given the biggest share not only because it is one of the biggest hospitals but because when you look at the records, they have claimed more cases than others,” the post read.

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