Categories
Insurance PhilHealth

How our Health Card helped us SAVE P50,000 for Hospital Bill

It’s been a week since my daughter was discharged from the hospital (full story here) and I just want to share how our health card saved us from paying more than P50,000 for the hospital bill.

She was hospitalized for 10 days at the World Citi Medical Center (WCMC) in Quezon City and was admitted in an “open private room” at P2,200 per day rate (a large room with bathroom, AC, cable TV, telephone, and fridge).

Before we went to the hospital, I contacted our health card provider first and they confirmed that our card is still active until the end of November 2014. At the hospital, I personally spoke with the hospital’s Admission Personnel and their Liaison Officer, and a representative from our health card provider through phone. I made sure that my daughter’s hospitalization would be covered by our health card before they admit her; otherwise, I‘d have to take her to another hospital which is much more affordable than WCMC.

It’s been a week since my daughter was discharged from the hospital and I just want to share how our health card saved us from paying more than P50,000 for the hospital bill. She was hospitalized for 10 days at the World Citi Medical Center (WCMC) in Quezon City and was admitted in an “open private room” at P2,200 per day rate (a large room with bathroom, AC, cable TV, telephone, and fridge). Before we went to the hospital, I contacted our health card provider first and they confirmed that our card is still active until the end of November 2014. At the hospital, I personally spoke with the hospital’s Admission Personnel and their Liaison Officer, and a representative from our health card provider through phone. I made sure that my daughter’s hospitalization would be covered by our health card before they admit her; otherwise, I‘d have to take her to another hospital which is much more affordable than WCMC. Here’s the thing… My daughter was given her own health card with a coverage of P130,000 per illness and this was provided by my husband’s previous employer as one of their company benefits. He resigned from this company last April 2014 and he is currently employed in his new company with no health card provided since he’s still a probationary employee. After a long verification process with the hospital personnel and health card provider, my daughter’s admission at WCMC was finally approved with full coverage except for a portion of the bill that was supposed to be shouldered by Philhealth. As for Philhealth, the member is required to have at least 6 months of contributions from the date of admission. That sounded like another issue because my husband has only been employed in his new company for 3 months and was unemployed for 3 months prior without contributions after he resigned from his previous company in April. The Philhealth personnel at WCMC was kind of confused with the situation and she initially advised us to accomplish and submit duly signed CF1 form with Certificate of Contribution from his previous company. But she later advised that we should get those requirements from my husband’s current company instead. That’s what we did and we also got a copy of his MDR (member’s data record) at the Philhealth office in Alimall Cubao. Our total hospital bill was P59,000. P9,000 was covered by Philhealth and the rest was covered by our health card provider. We also paid P500 for miscellaneous fee. Our daughter, Macey, is doing pretty well now and we’re very thankful to my husband’s previous company for providing us a health card that even if he’s no longer with the company, he was still able to avail of its benefits. It’s the second time that we used that health card for hospitalization. The first was when my mother-in-law was hospitalized and everything was also covered by the card and it happened during his first month of employment in the company. That family health card is expiring very soon (end of November 2014) and my husband doesn’t have a new one yet from his current company. I also have none as of the moment because I am self-employed and the health card that was given to me by my previous company is also expiring this month. What I needed to do now is to find a good health card package that is within our budget and that could cater to our health needs especially when our little one gets sick again (hopefully not again). I know that having a health card is also one way of securing not only our health but also our pockets. Sabi nga ng isang commercial, “mahal magkasakit”. I also believe that prevention is better than cure. But in some cases, sickness happens no matter how much we try to take care of ourselves and prevent from having diseases/illnesses. And this is one of the reasons why aside from saving a portion of our income for emergency fund, it’s also necessary to have a good health card coverage much like having a life insurance. “Good health is not something we can buy. However, it can be an extremely valuable savings account.” -Anne Wilson Schaef- If you’ve reached this far, you’re probably curious now on what health card we have. It’s actually Maxicare. In my previous company of 7 years, our health card provider was also Maxicare and I never had any issue with them. This is my first choice of health card should I get one for my family but I’m also considering other options out there. How about you, what’s your health card and how’s your experience with your provider?
Macey at the hospital (a day before she was discharged)

Here’s the thing…

My daughter was given her own health card with a coverage of P130,000 per illness and this was provided by my husband’s previous employer as one of their company benefits. He resigned from this company last April 2014 and he is currently employed in his new company with no health card provided since he’s still a probationary employee.

After a long verification process with the hospital personnel and health card provider, my daughter’s admission at WCMC was finally approved with full coverage except for a portion of the bill that was supposed to be shouldered by Philhealth.

As for Philhealth, the member is required to have at least 6 months of contributions from the date of admission. That sounded like another issue because my husband has only been employed in his new company for 3 months and was unemployed for 3 months prior without contributions after he resigned from his previous company in April.

The Philhealth personnel at WCMC was kind of confused with the situation and she initially advised us to accomplish and submit duly signed CF1 form with Certificate of Contribution from his previous company. But she later advised that we should get those requirements from my husband’s current company instead. That’s what we did and we also got a copy of his MDR (member’s data record) at the Philhealth office in Alimall Cubao.

Our total hospital bill was P59,000. P9,000 was covered by Philhealth and the rest was covered by our health card provider. We also paid P500 for miscellaneous fee.

Macey-playing
Macey playing…

Our daughter, Macey, is doing pretty well now and we’re very thankful to my husband’s previous company for providing us a health card that even if he’s no longer with the company, he was still able to avail of its benefits. It’s the second time that we used that health card for hospitalization. The first was when my mother-in-law was hospitalized and everything was also covered by the card and it happened during his first month of employment in the company.

That family health card is expiring very soon (end of November 2014) and my husband doesn’t have a new one yet from his current company. I also have none as of the moment because I am self-employed and the health card that was given to me by my previous company is also expiring this month.

What I needed to do now is to find a good health card package that is within our budget and that could cater to our health needs especially when our little one gets sick again (hopefully not again). I know that having a health card is also one way of securing not only our health but also our pockets.

Sabi nga ng isang commercial, “mahal magkasakit”.

I also believe that prevention is better than cure. But in some cases, sickness happens no matter how much we try to take care of ourselves and prevent from having diseases/illnesses. And this is one of the reasons why aside from saving a portion of our income for emergency fund, it’s also necessary to have a good health card coverage much like having a life insurance.

Good health is not something we can buy. However, it can be an extremely valuable savings account.” -Anne Wilson Schaef-

If you’ve reached this far, you’re probably curious now on what health card we have. It’s actually Maxicare. In my previous company of 7 years, our health card provider was also Maxicare and I never had any issue with them. This is my first choice of health card should I get one for my family but I’m also considering other options out there.

How about you, what’s your health card and how’s your experience with your provider?

Categories
Random Updates

Is it worth it to buy an iPhone and other expensive gadgets?

While on our way to Megamall for the supposed 3-day sale last week, my sister and I had a brief conversation about buying a new cellphone…

Sister: Ate, yung boss ko, binebenta yung iPhone 5 niya P15,000 lang kasi bibili siya ng brand new iPhone 6.

Me: Ang mahal naman…

Sister: Mura na yun. Bago lang kaya yun, wala pang 1 year.

Me: Yung officemate ni John nagbebenta din ng iPhone 5.  P7,000 lang.

Sister: Talaga??? Bilhin mo na!

Me: Ayoko…

Sister: Ano ba yan, ayaw ng mahal, ayaw ng mura… Ano gusto mo?!?

Me: Eh kasi my cellphone pa ko. Ok pa naman at di naman sira. Bakit ako bibili ng bago? Gusto ko din magkaron ng iPhone pero hindi pa yan ang priority ko sa ngayon…

Sister: Hmmmppp, KJ!

I might have sounded KJ (kill joy) but I was just being practical and honest. I’d love to have an iPhone but I don’t need it right now. I still have my 2-year old cellphone which I got from my postpaid plan for free and it’s still fully functional.

The only reason why I wanted to have an iPhone is because of its “name”. But whenever I think about its price, I always make excuses for myself not to buy one for now even if I can afford it. I like the specs and I really believe in the quality of Apple products because I had an iPhone before and my old iPad 1 is still perfectly working. Well, I know that iPhone is iPhone. And for some, it’s really the “brand/name” that counts.

For me, there’s nothing wrong about buying or having an expensive gadget like iPhone as long as you have enough budget for it. Actually, even if you have enough budget but you don’t have savings and/or emergency fund yet, I don’t think it’s practical to buy an expensive gadget, unless it’s going to generate more income for you or for your business (or maybe it’s gonna give you extreme satisfaction and happiness).

What more if you’re planning to borrow money or apply for a loan just to buy this gadget? I don’t really think it’s worth it. I’d rather buy a more affordable brand new cellphone of another brand, with nearly or even the same specs with the expensive iPhone than bury myself in debt and sacrifice my other needs for several months just to pay it all off.   

How about you, are you planning to buy a new cellphone (specifically the new Iphone 6)? Why or why not? 🙂

Disclaimer: I’m not against iPhone and other Apple products. This post is purely based on my opinion and this is for informational purposes only. 

Categories
Random Updates

Happy 1st Monthsary, Pinay Investor!

It’s been a month since I developed and published this website and I’m very happy with how it looks now. Imagine, a stay-at-home-mom, who knows nothing about web development, managed to create a website like this. Never in my entire life did I imagine that I will be a self-taught web developer. And with all the nose-bleeding moments that I went through while learning CSS, HTML, and a little bit of PHP, in fairness to me, I survived and made this dream blog live. 🙂

The contents may not be perfectly written because I’m not really a writer. I’m just aspiring to be one. But that did not stop me from sharing my ideas… Because I believe, that my ideas are worth sharing… And I’m continuously learning and improving…

I’m deeply honored and humbled by the support of my followers and readers. There’s not a lot of them but enough to keep me inspired and motivated to continue my advocacy of spreading financial literacy.

In terms of statistics, www.pinayinvestor.com already had 1,451 unique visitors with a daily average of 80 visits, and a total of 187,426 hits. It’s not much compared to other blogs but getting these numbers in only a month’s time is just overwhelming.

And to all of you who have already liked Pinay Investor’s facebook page, thank you so much for your support. You all made it possible for Pinay Investor to reach 180 likes as of this writing. I truly appreciate it and I’m hoping to gain more likes and followers as we go along…

In return, I will publish more and more interesting posts that will surely be beneficial to all of us as we journey towards financial independence…

Again, thank you and let’s all greet Pinay Investor a happy, happy 1st monthsary!

More months, more posts, more likes, more followers, and more blessings to come! 🙂

Categories
Forex Investment

I Won $500 from a Contest on Facebook!

If you’re a friend on my personal facebook account, you’ve probably noticed or even wondered why I suddenly changed my display name to my real full name. And that is because I joined a contest and one of the conditions was to use my FB account with my real name.

Here’s the full story…

A day before I attended MTrading’s Forex Seminar, I visited their official facebook page and saw a post about an ongoing contest. I never joined any contest on facebook before but this one made me curious and so I gave it a try. I checked out the details and found the mechanics to be pretty easy…

  • Post a trading advice and share it. Whichever comment gets the most likes by the 18th of August will earn $500 on their trading account!

Without any further-a-do, I posted my “advice” comment to their page and waited for the other members to like it. I also invited a few of my FB friends who were online to like MTrading’s page and of course my comment.

I checked the page from time to time to monitor my likes and the others’ too. But it seemed like the other members who posted their comments weren’t exerting as much effort on the contest. For a week, my comment remained on top of the page for having the most likes.

It seemed like I was the only one interested to win. I didn’t know if the $500 prize seemed too good to be true that’s why the other commenters were kind of skeptical about it. Or maybe $500 is not a big deal to them. But for me it is.

I continued to monitor my likes until the last day of the contest. I even thought others would invite their friends to gain more likes but to my advantage, nobody got more than mine. I ended up having 22 likes while the one next to me only got 4. I could have more if my competitors showed their willingness to win. But they didn’t, so in the end, I was announced as the WINNER!

I still could not believe that the prize was real but when I received an email from MTrading and when I checked my trading account, voila! My $500 prize was already credited.

Even with certain conditions applied (like I can only use it for trading purposes), I am still very happy to have won in the contest. It’s such a surprise bonus! 😉

It’s not much but good enough to fund my forex trading account. At least I don’t have to worry now where to get my funds from to start my forex venture. I’m not confident in forex yet but I’m already practicing using my demo trading account. If I get any better, then I’ll go with my live account and use my prize funds.

Thank you MTrading for this opportunity!

Featured Image courtesy of MTrading.

Categories
Seminars

Am I ready to become a Registered Financial Planner (RFP)?

Exactly a month ago, I attended RFP’s free info-session at their office in Ortigas. I learned about RFP at the Money Summit and Wealth Expo 2014 when I came across their booth. I signed up on their guest sheet and the staff shared a little bit about RFP and its program.

Two weeks later, I received an email from one of their staff inviting me to attend their free info session. It was initially scheduled on July 17 but was moved to July 24 due to typhoon Glenda. Without thinking twice, I accepted their invitation and confirmed my attendance.

Even before Money Summit, I was already hearing about RFP from some of my favorite finance bloggers. But the only thing I knew about it was that it’s attached as a suffix right after the name just like PhD for Doctor of Philosophy, MD for Doctor of Medicine, and RN for Registered Nurse. And RFP was new to me that’s why I confirmed to attend the RFP info session to know more about it.

I reached the venue and registered at 6:45PM but the session started at exactly 7:30PM. The speaker was Mr. Henry Ong, the director of RFP.

 Henry Ong RFP

Let me share to you what I learned from the session…

A lot of people go through financial issues and challenges. And I admit I’m one of them. Lucky you if you have not experienced any issues related to money or finance. But what is it really that causes these issues and failures?

Failures happen not because we didn’t plan to fail, but because we failed to plan. And I guess one of the reasons of this are the various misconceptions about finance.

Some people believe that they don’t need to plan because they’re already earning much or that they already have enough. But the truth is, the more you earn, the more you need financial planning to secure and preserve your money and resources.

A good example of this are the lotto jackpot winners. They’re are so lucky to have gotten a ‘one time big time’ chance. But what happened to most of them? They went back to their old way of living or even went bankrupt and left with debts because they failed to plan. They didn’t know what to do with their money that’s why they spent it on just whatever they like even for things that aren’t necessary.

Another thing is, some people wait for financial crisis to happen before creating a financial plan. I guess most of us can relate to this. Sometimes we spend on things that we want even if they’re not necessarily what we need. We buy the latest gadget or cellphone with quad core processor, 32 gig memory, and retina display. But do we really need it? Maybe yes, maybe not. Then what happens next? We end up regretting why we bought it when we can still use the not-so-old one that we have. And now we are struggling just to make both ends meet.

I’m not saying be hard to yourself. Of course you can buy the latest, the grandest and even the most expensive thing in the world if you want to. But the first question is, can you afford it? Second, can you afford it without you having to go on “diet” for a few days or weeks just to cut on your expenses because you fall short on your budget?  If your answer is YES then go ahead and buy it. I’m sure you’ll be very happy to have it.

The Registered Financial Planners (RFP) Philippines is an independent self-regulatory professional organization offering education and membership in the financial planning field. Its mission is to promote professionalism in practice of financial planning. (Source: http://www.rfp.ph/)

They offer the Registered Financial Planner (RFP) Program to individuals who want to acquire the expertise necessary to be a practitioner in the personal financial planning industry. It also aims to enhance your knowledge and build on the experience you already have in the financial services industry and broaden your opportunities by networking with other financial service professionals.

After knowing all these, I thought that it would be a good opportunity for me to expand my financial knowledge by taking this program. Not only will it help me achieve my financial goals (hopefully) but also help others by promoting financial literacy.

The RFP Program is good for 8 weeks (8 consecutive Saturdays). Application for Batch 42 was ongoing when we attended the info-session and Mr. Ong offered an exclusive special discount for us. The fee for this program is a little expensive but I know it’s worth an investment in education.

rfp 

I’m very interested to join RFP but due to having limited funds and considering other priorities, I wasn’t able to join Batch 42 which started yesterday. But I’m not closing my doors to this opportunity. If the right time comes, I will definitely join RFP and I will be honored to be called “Registered Financial Planner” with the suffix RFP attached to my name. 🙂

Credits: RFP Philippines

Categories
Investment Stock Market

Stock Market Updates as of August 2014

I haven’t shared much about the stock market lately because my posts in July were all about my stock market venture. And I know that it might have been a little boring to some readers who are not interested in this type of investment vehicle.

Also, I kind of took a break in intra-day trading because I have limited funds and my current portfolio seems to be suitable for long-term investment. (Does it sound like a defense mechanism of a loser? 🙂 ) But seriously, as I learn the ins and outs of the stock market plus the knowledge I gained in the seminars that I’ve attended, I’m slowly realizing the advantages of long-term investment over short-term trading. I will tell you more about this in a separate post. In the meantime, I will share some updates related to my stock market venture.

MA (Manila Mining Corporation)

The highest percentage of my portfolio still comes from MA (Manila Mining Corporation). This is not a blue chip company but I still hold on to this stock because I believe in its positive market outlook. The stock value increased a bit after the Stock Rights Offering (SRO) that officially showed up in July. There is a slow movement in its valuation which is indicative to its low trading volume and the trend has always been sideways.

I visited the company’s website to know the disbursements made out of the SRO proceeds. In their report on July 2, 2014, they disclosed that the highest percentage of the proceeds went to Accounts Payable Trade and Accruals while the rest went to the disbursements of  Contractors, Cost of SRO, Care and Maintenance/Adm. Expenses, Drilling Program and Payables to the government like taxes, SSS, etc.

I’m relatively new to stock market and I don’t have enough knowledge in technical and fundamental analyses so if you want to know more about MA, you may visit their website through this link.

I don’t know either if MA was a good choice of stock or if I made a mistake in investing with this company. I’m staying positive and hopefully it follows the footsteps of SCC (Semirara Mining Corporation). 🙂

SINO (Sinophil Corporation)

I used a small portion of my funds to buy SINO (Sinophil Corporation) in June 2014. It was at 1.61 per share when I bought it. A common mistake of a stock market noob is being too eager to go with the flow or buying a hot stock without studying the technical and the fundamental background of the company. Yes I’m guilty of that and I paid my price. 🙂

It was on its peak when I bought it. In technical analysis, they call it resistance. And apparently, after hitting its resistance level, it went back down again and continued to dive until it reached around 1.15 per share. Another heart-breaking experience for me. 🙁

I held on to it and waited patiently. After a month, it bounced back and reached 1.71. And that’s when I decided to sell all my shares with almost 6% profit.

PSEi finally hit its 7,000 level

August is believed to be a ghost month and for some, it is not a good time to invest or open a business. One of the reasons being is that the economy kind of slows down during this month thus some investors take a break from the market. While it is only a belief, historical data show that August seemed to be the weakest month in the stock market.

Surprisingly, PSEi (Philippine Stock Exchange Composite Index) breached the 7,000 mark for the first time in nearly 13 months! PSEi by the way, is the main stock market index of the Philippine Stock Exchange, which is one of the indicators on the general state of the Philippine economy. So when the PSEi is high or is going up, it can be an indication that our economy is doing well or the corporate earnings are improving.

Now, is it a good time to invest?

From what I learned so far, there is no such thing as best day or best time to invest. No matter if it’s ghost month or not, it’s always a good time to invest. But before you take any action, make sure to educate yourself first. As Benjamin Franklin says,

Investment in knowledge pays the best interest.”

Categories
Investment

Where to Invest

Most if not all my previous posts were related to investing in the stock market.

I know that not everybody is interested in this topic because aside from the fact that it’s complicated, it’s also a risky type of investment especially to those who don’t have enough knowledge and background in investing.

That’s why I always suggest to educate yourself first before you get into the world of investing.

Attend Seminars

If you’re interested to learn the basics of the stock market, there are a lot of seminars out there that you can attend.

If you already have a stock broker in mind, you can check out their website for the seminars that they offer.

Most of the brokers offer these seminars for free even if you’re not yet a customer or client. They do this to educate and encourage people to start investing in the stock market.

learn stock market

Afraid to take risks?

If you think your risk appetite is not for stock market investing, you may also visit your nearest bank.

Go ahead and talk to the marketing officer and ask about the different investment options that they offer.

Most of us only knew of savings and time deposit accounts but in reality, the banks have so many other options to make our money grow including UITFs, bonds, and even insurance.

The only thing I don’t like with the banks is that they don’t initiate offering these options for their customers unless you ask about it which I find unfair for those who really know nothing about investing.

That happened to me a lot of times in the past when I was still “window shopping” for the different investment opportunities.

 invest in the bank

Employed? Ask your HR if they Offer Investments for their Employees

If you’re an employee, you may ask your HR officer if the company offers investment options.

These are different from the government mandated contributions for SSS, Philhealth, and Pagibig Fund.

Some employers tie up with investment companies to offer investment options to their employees via ADA or Automatic Debit Arrangement on scheduled dates.

In my previous company, I got the opportunity to sign up an account separately for Homecredit Mutual Fund by Insular Life and Ayala Coop by the Ayala Group of Companies. I get deducted from my salary every pay day for my contributions.

where to invest

Invest in Real Estate

If you’re more interested in investing your money in real estate, that’s also a good option. Who doesn’t want to have his own house in the first place? Everyone does, right? Or at least everyone dreams to have his own house.

invest in real estate 

Indeed, there are so many investment options available in the market right now. We just have to be resourceful in finding and learning about these investment opportunities and choose the ones that best suit our current financial status, risk appetite, and investment goals.

Diversify Your Investments

If you have enough budget, you can have all of these at the same time.

That’s what we call diversification.

It goes with the saying, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” Meaning, you can diversify your investments by putting some of your money in your savings account in the bank, some for mutual fund, stocks, and/or in real estate.

It’s safer this way because if for example, your shares of stocks didn’t do well for some reasons, at least you still have your other investments intact.

diversify your investment

My Personal Investments

I have also tried a couple of investments including San Felipe Neri Coop, Insular Homecredit, Ayala Coop, BPI Save-up, and BDO UITF.

I have also written a few articles about my stock market venture, which you can find HERE.

I’ll try to share my experience with these investments in my future blog posts. 🙂

How about you?

What type of investment have you tried?