Philippines Hospitals CANNOT Imprison You for Non Payment

ambulance leaving guimaras provincial hospital

According to the Constitution of the Philippines “no one shall be imprisoned for nonpayment of debt or poll tax.” It is common practice in the Philippines to hold patients hostage until their bill is fully paid. I know from personal experience. When you have a guard armed with a shotgun at the exit of a hospital that has to scrutinize your officially paid receipt before you can leave, it does prompt one to pay that bill in full before checking out.  A recent column in the Inquirer Lifestyle pointed out that such hospitals are in violation of the Constitution.  What can one do if you find yourself with an unpaid balance as you try to leave your Philippines hospital?

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