Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo today led the distribution of around 1,000 insurance cards under the Provincial Health Insurance of Negros Oriental (PHINO), a unique insurance program implemented by the provincial government here. 


The distribution of PHINO cards in Canlaon City is the 11th leg in the provincial government’s campaign to enroll under PHINO all identified indigent families in Negros Oriental.


After Canlaon City, the next stop for the PHINO card distribution is Ayungon town, which he said has signified their interest in enrolling the town’s identified indigent families. 

The PHINO program was created by the late Gov. Emilio Macias, who was a physician by profession, with the aim of giving free health insurance to indigent residents in the province. 


Gov. Degamo said he continued to implement said program because he believes in it. “I believe this is a good program because insurance should be for everyone,” he stressed in an interview.


He added that signing up for the program is fast and easy, as the enrollment’s processing is done at the Capitol. 


The governor was, however, quick to say that PHINO does not in any way compete with Philhealth. “We are not competing with Philhealth, and the people are free to choose what health insurance they desire,” he stressed.


Dr. Ely Villapando, who oversees PHINO’s implementation, in an earlier interview said that patients can be a member of both Philhealth and PHINO. 


PHINO’s accredited hospital for now is the Negros Oriental Provincial Hospital.