Digital healthcare: How Pinoys can extend care for OFWs’ families despite distance

August 1, 2022 - 1:05 PM
Covid temperature photo created by Drazen Zigic via

A global digital healthcare company recently launched digital end-to-end healthcare plans that focus on providing healthcare coverage to families of migrant workers.

Aptly named asistensi, the digital healthcare firm was established in the country to “assist” or support migrant workers and their families by providing them accessible healthcare.

The Spain-based healthcare company, led by a group of healthcare professionals with almost two decades of experience in Europe and Latin America, considered the significant population of Overseas Filipino workers in establishing the healthcare service.

It said it aims to be the Filipino migrant worker’s partner in easing financial woes related to healthcare and medical expenses.

“Every Filipino knows of someone who works overseas. Whether it’s a family member or a friend, it’s hard not to think about how challenging it must be for OFWs to juggle their many concerns while ensuring that they are able to provide financial support to those back home,” said Bjorn Pardo, managing director of asistensi Philippines last Wednesday.

“Health is a priority but oftentimes only dealt with on a per-need basis and investments in this aspect often take the backseat to more pressing concerns. This is the gap we want to address – we want migrant workers to have the peace of mind that in the event of sudden need, their families in the Philippines can be covered by a healthcare plan that relieves them of immediate financial stress and allows them to focus on the health issues at hand,” he added.

The healthcare company offers unlimited telemedicine 24/7, ambulance service, home and in-clinic primary care, home and in-clinic laboratory tests, medication delivery, access to major hospitals and hospitalization surgery coverage.

Individuals aged up to 85 years old including those with pre-existing conditions are eligible to avail of the end-to-end healthcare plan for as low as P866 a month.

Interested beneficiaries must secure online payment, 100% digital onboarding and instant enrollment of dependents to avail of the plan which can be purchased online from any country. There are no required medical admission exams.

The telemedicine services may also be availed through the asistensi app Monday to Sundays from anywhere in the world.

Once a beneficiary feels unwell or has an emergency, the health provider can be reached through the asistensi Philippines mobile application or via the call center at +632-8280-1066. Its medical doctors will subsequently perform the necessary assessments on patients following triage protocols to determine the best next step.

Once these steps are determined and the claim is completed, the health provider will cover costs according to the beneficiary’s entitlement.

To give Filipinos more comprehensive healthcare, the company also partnered with local medical leaders including Hi-Precision Diagnostics, Argonix, Home Healthcare, Lifeline 16911 and its primary HMO partner, Maxicare.

From Left to Right: Sean Argos, Maxicare PH CEO;
Bjorn Pardo, asistensi PH Managing Director, Dr.
Andrés González, asistensi Executive Chairman,
Armando Baquero, asistensi CEO during the launch of asistensi Philippines in Makati City on July 27, 2022. (Released)

Maxicare CEO Sean Argos said their company shares the same goal as asistensi in helping Filipinos and making healthcare accessible even to those overseas.

“We believe that the best healthcare should be convenient and accessible to all, especially to OFWs and their loved ones at home. Through this partnership, they can benefit from Maxicare’s network of accredited hospitals in cases of emergency,” Argos said.

“Should they ever need to consult with a primary care physician or specialist, they need only walk into one of our Primary Care Clinics offering state-of-the-art diagnostics in a professional yet relaxed environment. With a short waiting time, they can complete their visit quickly allowing them plenty of time to do the things that matter most to them. Convenience with easy access to superior healthcare, this is what Maxicare will contribute to the partnership,” he added.

Prado concurred and stressed anew the importance of such services amid unprecedented times such as the still prevailing COVID-19 pandemic.

“With our OFW community constantly worrying about the wellbeing of their families at home, we at asistensi hope to provide the health coverage for emergencies that every Filipino deserves, regardless of their status or where they reside,” he concluded.