The Social Security System (SSS) disbursed record-breaking benefit payments of nearly P1.1 trillion to its members, pensioners, and their beneficiaries from 2016 to 2021.
SSS President and CEO Michael G. Regino said this is almost twice as much as the P549.59 billion benefit payments the SSS made from 2010 to 2015.
PCEO Regino attributed the increase in the amount of benefit disbursements mainly to the reforms implemented over the last few years such as those provided under Republic Act Nos. 11199 (Social Security Act of 2018) and 11210 (Expanded Maternity Leave Law), and the granting of the additional P1,000 benefit for pensioners starting 2017.
The reforms under the Social Security Act of 2018 include the expansion of the SSS’ mandatory coverage to Overseas Filipino Workers, increasing the maximum monthly salary credit for the computation of benefits, and granting of the Unemployment Benefit, among others.
The Expanded Maternity Leave Law, on the other hand, extended the compensable days from 60 (normal delivery) or 78 (caesarian delivery) days for each of the first four deliveries to 105 days, regardless of frequency, with an additional 15 days for solo mothers for every delivery.
It also saw record-breaking loan releases from 2016 to 2021 with a total of P249.54 billion, an 84 percent growth from the P135.63 billion loans released from 2010 to 2015, due to the increase in the maximum loanable amount, launch of the Pension Loan Program in September 2018, and nationwide offering of the COVID-19 Calamity Loan Assistance Program with more flexible payment terms and a lower interest rate in 2020.
Based on its 2019 Actuarial Valuation, SSS’ financial outlook also improved as it estimated its fund life to last until 2054, 10 years more than the projection in its updated 2015 report. The main reasons for the improvement include the anticipated increase in the number of paying members due to the expansion of SSS’ membership coverage and increases in the contribution rate and minimum and maximum monthly salary credits every other year from 2019 to 2025 as provided under the Social Security Act of 2018.
“Much as we have progressed, there is still a lot more to be done. We will continue to build on our gains and establish a more viable SSS for our current and future stakeholders,” Regino said.
Apart from its notable financial performance, the SSS successfully implemented various plans, programs, and measures for the last 6 years that are anchored on providing universal and equitable social protection through world-class service and fund viability.