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EXCLUSIVE: Doctor in alleged PhilHealth scam denies accusations

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TUGUEGARAO CITY, Philippines– Medical doctor Christopher Ian Cabalza finally broke his silence and cried foul over a‘trial by publicity” after he was named in early investigation as the practitioner who gypped PhilHealth in the biggest health insurance scam to hit Cagayan Valley region.

In an exclusive interview with the Forum on Saturday, March 25, Cabalza expressed disappointment over his immediate identification without the benefit of preliminary investigation.

He said he was given an order of his temporary suspension to practice his profession in this city’s Peoples General Hospital (TCPGH) without explaining his side of the story.

Cabalza vowed to answer the allegations in case charges will be filed against him, adding he already talk to his lawyer who earlier advised him not to talk to give public statements.

Cabalza said he is confident the “truth will come out.”

“I know in myself that I am innocent,” he said.


Cabalza also challenged the local media zeroing him in as the prime doctor involved when in fact he only reapplied in 2016.

In his Bombo Radyo interview, acting vice Mayor Jude Bayona said the scam was traced as early as 2013 and up to the early part of 2017.

“It could amount to P6 million by now,” Bayona told the radio, adding that they found 252 ghost claims from 2013 to 2016.

Cabalza said the pronouncements of Bayona that the irregularities started in 2013 when he was not working in the hospital until January 2016 is an early “vindication” that he was not at all involved in their scam.

He said he was in Africa in 2012 and in Delgado Memorial Hospital in 2013. He then went to South America in 2014 and only came back in the Philippines late 2015.

“I came back here in the Philippines in 2015 and reapplied to TCPGH. I started working for them again in 2016,” Cabalza said, disclosing that he already worked with the hospital in 2006 but left to pursue other works and his studies abroad.

A reliable source told Forum that PhilHealth had already discovered the irregularities as early as 2014 but did not pursue investigation after the city government assured PhilHealth involved individuals have been dismissed from hospital service.

The Forum is expected to conduct inquiries on this new development from both the city government and PhilHealth for statements. –Benjie De Yro and Raymon Dullana/ Northernforum.net

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