Thinking about getting a PhilHealth ID card? Perhaps you’re wondering how to get one online without having to deal with third-party online assistance services or fixers. Wonder no more because we’ve come up with this comprehensive guide on how to apply for a PhilHealth ID through the official channels prescribed by PhilHealth.
The Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, or otherwise known as PhilHealth, is the government-owned and controlled corporation that manages the universal healthcare program of the Philippines. Under PhilHealth, members can avail of healthcare benefits to help reduce the financial burden of sickness and hospitalization. If you are not a PhilHealth member yet, you can apply for membership online at the PhilHealth website or personally at the nearest PhilHealth branch.
As a PhilHealth member, you have the option to apply for an identification card that serves as a valid form of identification in your transactions with PhilHealth or any other government agency. The PhilHealth ID card is free of charge and has no expiration date, which means that you can use it for life. It’s one of the easiest ID cards to get in the Philippines, because unlike other government-issued IDs like the UMID and the National ID, it doesn’t require the submission of lengthy forms or supporting documents.
No matter your purpose and motivation for obtaining a PhilHealth identification card, it’s good to know that you can easily get one without resorting to unauthorized online assistance services. In this article, you will learn how to apply for a PhilHealth ID, the requirements for getting one, and whether this card is considered as a valid ID or not.
Table of Contents
- What is the PhilHealth ID?
- Types of PhilHealth ID Cards
- Is the PhilHealth ID a Valid ID?
- PhilHealth ID Card Requirements
- How to Apply for a PhilHealth ID Card
- How to Apply for Replacement of Lost PhilHealth ID
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Thoughts
What is the PhilHealth ID?
The PhilHealth ID is an identification card that is issued by the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation specifically for its members. The ID card indicates that the cardholder and his or her qualified dependents are entitled to receive their benefits and privileges.
The identification card features the member’s PhilHealth identification number (PIN) alongside his or her name and signature. It also provides a blank space where the member attach his or her front-facing photograph. Furthermore, the ID card contains the following information:
- Name of PhilHealth member or cardholder
- PhilHealth identification number
- Signature of cardholder
- Home address (for digitized card only)
Cardholders can use the PhilHealth identification card as proof of identity and for verification as a PhilHealth member. Members may present the card in their official dealings with PhilHealth in order to expedite the processing of claims and other transactions.
Types of PhilHealth ID Cards
There are two types of PhilHealth ID cards: the traditional paper-based ID card and the new digitized ID card.
The paper-based card, as the name implies, is made of thin cardboard paper and usually needs to be laminated to prevent tearing and perforation. The digitized card, on the other hand, is made of PVC plastic similar to that of credit cards, and contains security features such as a QR code and magnetic stripe.
At the moment, only the paper card can be obtained from PhilHealth. The agency stopped issuing digitized PhilHealth cards on December 2017 and there’s no word yet on when they will resume the production and issuance of such cards.
Is the PhilHealth ID a Valid ID?
Many PhilHealth members are curious to know whether the PhilHealth ID is considered as valid identification or not. After all, it’s relatively easy to get one. So is the PhilHealth ID a valid ID?
The answer is not so straightforward. Some government institutions such as the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Postal Corporation (PhilPost) may recognize and accept the paper-based PhilHealth ID, particularly when applying for their respective identification documents (e.g. NBI clearance).
Other government agencies, such as the Social Security System (SSS) and the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), may not accept the paper-based PhilHealth card as valid proof of identification. The same goes for private institutions such as banks and schools.
The digitized PhilHealth ID, however, is deemed as a valid ID that should be honored in all transactions requiring a person’s identity. This is based on PhilHealth Advisory No. 2016-0012 which requested all concerned government agencies to recognize and accept the PVC-type Health Insurance Card (HIC) as a valid form of identification.
In short, the paper-based PhilHealth ID card may or may not be considered as valid, depending on the government agency or private institution that you are transacting with, while the digitized PhilHealth card is widely recognized as a valid government-issued ID.
When transacting with a particular government agency, make sure that you confirm beforehand that your PhilHealth identification card is considered and accepted as valid. You can do this by visiting the said agency’s website or by calling their respective customer service hotlines.
However, the PhilHealth ID is a good starting point for acquiring other government-issued IDs. The following are the government-issued IDs that you can obtain using your PhilHealth card:
- NBI Clearance (Primary ID)
- Police Clearance (Primary ID)
- Postal ID (Secondary ID)
- National ID (Secondary ID)
PhilHealth ID Card Requirements
The following are the requirements that you need to prepare before applying for a PhilHealth ID:
- Any valid ID (e.g. UMID, national ID, school ID, driver’s license, passport)
- Authorization letter (for authorized representative only)
- 1×1 ID photo
The 1×1 photo is not necessarily a requirement that you have to submit to PhilHealth, but is needed to make your ID valid. If you don’t have a 1×1 picture, you can make one yourself by following this guide.
Unemployed persons can apply for a PhilHealth ID by submitting any valid ID.
How to Apply for a PhilHealth ID Card
First and foremost, you should already be a PhilHealth member before you can apply for a PhilHealth ID card. If you are not a member yet, you can read this article on how to register as a PhilHealth member online.
At the moment, there is no way to apply for a PhilHealth ID through the Internet or via email. All applications must be done personally at the Local Health Insurance Office (LHIO) nearest you. Avoid dealing with so-called “online assistance services” on Facebook and other social media sites. PhilHealth has warned members that these services are considered “fixing” and are strictly prohibited under the Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007.
So without further ado, here’s how to apply for and obtain your ID card for free.
Step 1: Visit the nearest PhilHealth office
The first thing you must do is to go to the nearest Local Health Insurance Office (LHIO) or PhilHealth Express office. You may visit this page to know the address and contact numbers of the LHIO in your city or municipality (be sure to select the appropriate region).
Don’t forget to bring a valid ID such as UMID, national ID, driver’s license or passport. If you are applying on behalf of another person, also bring an authorization letter signed by the applicant.
Step 2: Fill out the PhilHealth Request Form
Once you are at the PhilHealth office, head straight to the information desk and ask for a PhilHealth Request Form similar to the photo below.
Fill out the PhilHealth Request Form with the following information:
- Name of Member – Write your name or that of the applicant (if you’re an authorized representative).
- PhilHealth Number – If you forgot or misplaced your PhilHealth number, you may read this article to learn how to recover it.
- Birth Date
- Membership Category – Write “Direct Contributor” if you’re an employed or self-employed individual, a professional practitioner, a kasambahay, an OFW, or a foreign national. Write “Indirect Contributor” if you’re an indigent person, a 4Ps beneficiary, a senior citizen, a person with disability (PWD), or a member sponsored by an LGU. Visit this page for more information.
Don’t forget to check the box for “PhilHealth Identification Card (PIC)” in the “Request for” section. Also indicate the type of valid ID you are presenting (e.g. national ID).
Step 3: Submit your request form and valid ID
After filling out the Request Form, submit it to the LHIO personnel along with your valid ID. If you are an authorized representative applying on behalf of another member, also submit an authorization letter duly signed by the applicant.
Wait for a few minutes as the LHIO personnel processes and prints your PhilHealth card. However, processing might take an hour or two depending on the workload of the staff. You may even be asked to return the following day especially if you filed your request in the late afternoon. To avoid this inconvenience, be sure to file your application in the morning.
Step 4: Claim your new PhilHealth ID card
In most cases, it shouldn’t take more than an hour to claim your brand-new PhilHealth identification card. Upon claiming, double-check that the information in your ID card are correct and accurate. Don’t hesitate to inform the LHIO personnel if there are any mistakes in your ID.
Step 5: Attach your photo and sign the ID
An ID is only considered as valid if it has your photo and signature. So make sure to attach your 1×1 photo to your ID and affix your signature on the space provided.
It’s also a good idea to have your ID card laminated to prevent unwanted tearing and perforations. You can have your ID laminated at selected National Bookstore outlets, school supply stores, and printing shops. ID lamination usually costs anywhere from ₱15 to ₱100.
How to Apply for Replacement of Lost PhilHealth ID
If you lost or misplaced your PhilHealth identification card, you can easily obtain a free replacement. Just follow the same steps in applying for a new ID as laid out in the previous section.
However, you will need to submit an affidavit of loss along with your valid ID. Read this article to learn how to write an affidavit of loss and to have it notarized.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the PhilHealth ID free of charge?
Yes, the paper-based ID card is totally free of charge. The digitized PVC-type ID, on the other hand, costs ₱90 before issuance was suspended in 2017.
Does the PhilHealth ID have an expiration date?
No, the ID does not have an expiration date. It’s valid for life.
How can I use my PhilHealth ID to claim benefits?
When claiming benefits, you can use your PhilHealth card as a substitute for your Member’s Data Record (MDR). Present it to the PhilHealth personnel together with a duly accomplished Claim Form 1 (CF-1).
Are online assistance services legit?
According to PhilHealth, online assistance services that offer to process your PhilHealth documents for a fee are in violation of the Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007. Avoid dealing with these online fixers as there is no assurance that the documents you obtained from them are authentic. You may also be exposing your private information to complete strangers when transacting with these fixers.
Getting a PhilHealth identification card is an important matter that merits serious consideration, especially during these trying times. With this identification card in your possession, you can help expedite the processing and issuance of your PhilHealth benefits and claims, which is crucial during times of illness or hospitalization. A quick visit to the nearest PhilHealth Local Health Insurance Office is all you need to get your PhilHealth ID, and it doesn’t cost you a single centavo.
If you have any questions and concerns about your PhilHealth membership, feel free to call the customer service hotline (02) 8441-7442 or email [email protected].