Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Unified IDs ready for mailing

By CHITO A. CHAVEZ
Manila Bulletin
http://www.mb.com.ph/articles/327354/unified-ids-ready-mailing

MANILA, Philippines — The first batch of 5,000 single identification (ID) cards that will help holders facilitate transactions among four government agencies included in the unified system will be released by mail within this month.

Social Security Systems (SSS) president and CEO Emilio de Quiroz Jr. said that the Unified Multipurpose Identification System (UMID) will also protect the members and the four concerned government agencies from fraud.

Aside from the SSS, the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth), Government Service Insurance System (GSIS). and the Home Development Mutual Fund (Pag-Ibig) are part of the unified system.

De Quiroz said that the UMID is a single format and one look card for all transactions of the SSS, GSIS, Philhealth, and Pag-ibig where each member is given a lifetime common reference number (CRN) that will enable the individual to use in conducting business with the mentioned agencies.

However, de Quiroz said that UMID should not be mistaken for the proposed national ID system since this is not mandatory and involves only the four government agencies as of the present.

He stressed that the UMID is an inter-agency effort that will provide reliability and convenience in government transactions.

The SSS hopes to distribute UMID cars to 25-million members in five years as the first batch of 5,000 cards presented before the media will be up for scrutiny and quality checking and will eventually be distributed by mail within two weeks.

De Quiroz said that his office will give priority to members with no SSS cards and will be given for free, clarifying that the agency will be charging P300 for each of the lost UMID cards.

With the current production of 5,000 UMID cards per day, De Quiroz noted that he hopes to produce 20,000 UMID cards daily in the near future to meet the 607,000-card backlog of the SSS.

He noted that the UMID is equipped with a card reader for each of the concerned agencies that will aid its member-users in their dealings.

Another aim of the SSS, De Quiroz said is for the members to obtain their loans and other benefits using the UMID cards avoiding long queues and anxious moments of waiting during transactions.

As part of moving forward, De Quiroz is also entertaining possibility of other government agencies joining the UMID system with the card also to be used for post-paid transactions within the year.

He noted that the UMID card system also cuts on government financial costs as the concerned government agencies share in the expenditures of producing the UMID card.

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