SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits l Moneymax

Being a mother is one of the most fulfilling roles for some women. From pregnancy until the child’s maturity, mothers will never stop providing love, support, and inspiration to their children. And amid poverty, the pandemic, loss of jobs, and economic uncertainty, more and more Filipino women are still becoming mothers and considering it a special blessing. 

The average number of babies born every day in the Philippines is 7,255, which is around 302 live births per hour.[1] This number contributes to the 111+ million total population of the country (as of August 2021) and composes 1.41% of the total world population.[2] 

At present, the government continues to assist Filipino mothers through SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits. The 60-day maternity leave period has also been increased to 105 days because of the Expanded Maternity Leave Law.[3] 

But are Filipino mothers getting the best benefits from the government? How do SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits in the Philippines compare to those of other countries? What forms of assistance can new and expectant mothers receive from the government, especially from the SSS and PhilHealth, and how can they avail of these? Learn more about maternity benefits in this article.

SSS and PhilHealth Maternity Benefits in the Philippines vs Other Countries

The Save the Children Federation published the State of the World’s Mothers Report in 2015[4] that ranked the best countries to be a mother. Rankings were based on generous paid maternity leave, maternal health, and children’s well-being, among others. The Philippines landed on the 105th spot among 179 countries. 

However, the report also recognized the country’s efforts, which include “improved quality of services, special programs for mothers and children, public-private partnerships, investments in frontline health workers, structural reforms and health care innovations introduced to the local government units.”

According to the report, these are the top 10 countries with the best maternity leave benefits:[5]

  1. Norway – 45 weeks of maternity leave at 80% pay, or 35 weeks of maternity leave with full-time pay
  2. Finland – 17.5 weeks of maternity leave, or 13 weeks fully paid time off
  3. Iceland – 13 weeks of paid leave at 59% of a woman’s full-time salary
  4. Denmark – 18 weeks of maternity leave with 14 weeks paid at 53.6% of full-time salary
  5. Sweden – 480 days of parental leave for both parents where both parents receive 390 days of paid leave at 80% of their salary
  6. Netherlands – 16 weeks of maternity leave with full-time pay + access to a maternity nurse with costs covered in part by insurance
  7. Spain – 16 weeks of maternity leave with a full-time salary
  8. Germany – 14 weeks of maternity leave with a full-time salary
  9. Australia – 18 weeks of paid maternity leave at 42% of the woman’s salary or 7.5 weeks of full-time pay
  10. Belgium – 15 weeks of paid maternity leave at 64% of the woman’s salary or 9.6 weeks of full-time pay

Compared to these countries, the Philippines offers up to 15 weeks of paid maternity leaves. However, the number of days is not the only factor that put these countries in the top 10.

The Philippines lags behind in terms of child health interventions, medical facilities, and economic status. Still, the report stated that we’ve been successful in addressing the health needs of the poorest families. The SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits, as well the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), are examples of government efforts to improve the health and nutrition of households with children and pregnant women. 

Related article: Spoil Your Mom on Mother’s Day with These Thoughtful Gift Ideas

SSS Maternity Benefits Guide

As a paying member of the SSS and PhilHealth, it’s important to know what your maternity benefits are, how they work, and how you can avail them. Here’s what you need to know.

What is SSS Maternity Benefit?

This maternity benefit granted by the SSS[6] is a daily cash allowance for covered female members who are unable to work due to childbirth, miscarriage, or emergency termination of pregnancy (including stillbirth).

Who Can Receive SSS Maternity Benefits in the Philippines?

SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits - eligibility

Female private employees, government employees, self-employed individuals, and national athletes covered by the SSS can avail of maternity benefits upon meeting the following requirements:

  • For private employees and self-employed women: At least three posted monthly SSS contributions within 12 months immediately before the semester of delivery, miscarriage, or abortion (For example, if you expect to give birth in June 2021, you should have paid at least three monthly contributions from January 2019 to December 2019.)
  • Notification and proof of pregnancy (ultrasound report, medical certificate, or pregnancy test stick) sent to the employer (for private workers), head of the agency (for government workers), or directly to the SSS through the My.SSS portal or SSS Mobile App (for OFW, self-employed, and unemployed members)

SSS Benefits Under the Expanded Maternity Leave Law

1. Paid Maternity Leave

Under the Expanded Maternity Leave Law (Republic Act 11210)[8], the SSS pays qualified SSS members a cash benefit equivalent to 100% of their average daily salary credit (See the SSS maternity benefit computation in the next section).

The paid leave lasts for up to a certain number of days as specified by the law:

  • 105 days for live childbirth, regardless if it’s a normal or caesarean delivery
  • 120 days for single mothers who are giving birth (105 days plus additional 15 days)
  • 60 days for women who had a miscarriage or emergency termination of pregnancy

Prior to the Expanded Maternity Leave Law, the SSS granted only 60 days of paid leave for normal delivery and 78 days of paid leave for caesarian delivery. The extended maternity leave duration gives mothers a longer time to prepare for childbirth, recover after giving birth, and take care of their newborns.

Your employer may provide longer maternity leaves beyond what the law mandates. Check your employment contract and collective bargaining agreement (CBA) or ask your HR department about it.

Another change imposed by the new maternity leave law is that there’s no limit to the number of covered pregnancies. Regardless of how many times you get pregnant, you’ll receive maternity benefits from the SSS each time you give birth or have a miscarriage/stillbirth. Previously, the granting of SSS maternity benefits is limited to the first four child deliveries or miscarriages.

While you’re on a maternity break, make your bonding moments with your newborn matter. Here are some lullabies you can play and hum along to put your baby to sleep.

2. Optional Maternity Leave Extension

On top of the mandatory 105 days of paid leave, SSS members who gave birth may choose to extend their maternity leave for 30 additional days without pay. You may avail of the maternity leave extension as long as you notify your employer in writing at least 45 days before the end of your maternity leave.

3. Optional Allocation of Maternity Leave to the Child’s Father

You also have the option to transfer seven days of your paid maternity leave to the baby’s father, whether you’re married to him or not. This applies only to cases of live childbirth.

If the child’s father is deceased, missing, or incapable of childcare, you may allocate the seven-day leave credits to a relative or your current partner you’re living with, regardless of gender identity.

If you’re availing of the optional maternity leave allocation, you should notify your employer about it. The father or alternate caregiver who will receive the allocated leave credits must notify his/her employer as well.

Read more: Paternity Benefits in the Philippines: What Expectant Fathers Must Know

How Much is the Maternity Benefit in SSS for 2021?

SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits - sss computation for maternity

Eligible SSS members may receive maternity benefits of up to PHP 80,000. The maximum benefit applies to members with a monthly salary credit (MSC) of PHP 20,000 (those earning PHP 19,750 and above per month).

If you want to know how much you’ll receive, here’s the formula for SSS maternity benefit computation:

SSS Maternity Benefit Computation

Total amount of SSS maternity benefit = (Average monthly salary credit ÷ 180) x Number of paid leave days

How to Compute Maternity Benefits in SSS

Using the formula above, here are the steps to compute your SSS maternity benefits:

1. Exclude the semester of delivery or miscarriage from the computation. For example, if your expected delivery date is June 2021, exclude the period from January to June 2021.

2. Count 12 months backward starting from the month right before the semester of delivery or miscarriage. Based on the example above, the 12-month period is from January to December 2020.

3. Get the sum of the six highest MSCs within the 12-month period. To find your MSC, refer to the SSS contribution table[9]. For example, if your monthly salary for January to December 2020 is PHP 30,000, your MSC is PHP 20,000. The sum of your six highest MSCs would be PHP 120,000 (PHP 20,000 x 6).

4. Divide your average MSC by 180 days to compute your average daily salary credit (ADSC), which is equivalent to your daily maternity allowance. If your average MSC is PHP 120,000, your ADSC is PHP 666.67.

5. Multiply your ADSC by the number of days you’re taking maternity leave to get the total amount of your SSS maternity benefit. That’s 105 days for normal or caesarean delivery, 120 days for solo parents, or 60 days for miscarriage, abortion, or stillbirth. Deduct seven days if you’ll transfer your leave credits to the child’s father or an alternate caregiver.

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Sample SSS Maternity Benefit Computation

Based on the details above, here’s an example of how to compute your SSS maternity benefit.

  • For normal/caesarian delivery: (PHP 120,000 ÷ 180) x 105 days = PHP 70,000
  • For solo parents:  (PHP 120,000 ÷ 180) x 120 days = PHP 80,000
  • For miscarriage/abortion/stillbirth: (PHP 120,000 ÷ 180) x 60 days =  PHP 40,000 

That’s the amount you’ll receive from the SSS if your salary is in the maximum MSC of PHP 20,000.

Note that you should still receive your full pay for the entire duration of your maternity leave. The Expanded Maternity Leave Law requires employers to pay for the salary differential, which is the difference between their covered employees’ full salary and the actual cash benefit from the SSS.

When Can I Get My SSS Maternity Benefit?

Your employer is required by law to pay your full maternity benefit within 30 days since you filed your maternity leave. The SSS will then reimburse the full amount that your employer paid to you. For self-employed or voluntary members, the SSS will pay the benefit directly to them.

SSS Maternity Benefit Online Application

Effective May 31, 2021, maternity benefits claims can be applied online as mandated by the Social Security Commission Resolution No. 189.s2021[7]

How to File Maternity Benefit Application Online:

  1. Log in to your My.SSS member account.
  2. Click Submit Maternity Benefit Application under the E-services tab. 
  3. Read the important reminders then click Proceed.
  4. Enter the required information then click Proceed for the validation of information and confirmation of your eligibility to SSS maternity benefits.
  5. Enter the additional required information like Type of Claim and Disbursement Account, then click Proceed.
  6. Upload the required supporting documents. Read the certification statement and click I Certify and Submit.
  7. Take note of the generated transaction details.
  8. Check your email for a notification from SSS about your maternity benefit application.

The process is the same when you apply for Maternity Benefit Application Adjustment, Maternity Benefit Reimbursement, and Adjustment of Maternity Benefit Reimbursement. Simply choose the corresponding tab from the E-services menu. 

How to Confirm Advance Receipt of Maternity Benefit

There are two ways to confirm that you received your maternity benefit in advance: through the link provided in the SSS email or via My.SSS.

  1. Click “Here” in the SSS email to access the confirmation screen or log in to your My.SSS member account. 
  2. Select “I Confirm” if you received the maternity benefit from your employer.
  3. Click “OK” to continue.
  4. Take note of the transaction number and the date of successful confirmation.

FAQS on SSS Maternity Benefits

SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits - FAQs on SSS maternity benefit

1. What do I need for my SSS Maternity Benefit online application?

You need to register for a My.SSS account. Also, you need to enroll in the Disbursement Account Enrollment Module (DAEM), which you can do on My.SSS, too. 

2. What cases of SSS maternity benefit adjustments can be filed online?

You can file applications for adjustments using your SSS online account if you meet any of these conditions:

  • You’re a qualified solo parent.
  • You’ll correct the type of claim from normal to caesarean delivery, or from miscarriage to ectopic pregnancy with an operation.
  • Your SSS computation is higher than your employer’s computation.
  • Additional contributions are posted.
  • There is a correction in the approved number of days.

3. Can I still submit my SSS Maternity Benefit application via dropbox?

Applications for SSS maternity benefits over the counter and through dropbox shall be allowed until August 31, 2021 only. 

However, the SSS allows the submission of claims that fall under the following conditions:

  • Denied claims which are reconsidered for payment
  • Unclaimed benefit of a deceased member
  • Unclaimed reimbursement of inactive/closed/terminated or retired employer

4. Until when can I confirm receipt of the maternity benefit advance payment?

Members who received their maternity benefits in advance shall confirm receipt within seven days from the date in the SSS email. 

5. What happens if I don’t receive the advance payment or confirm receipt?

The Maternity Benefit Reimbursement Adjustment (MBRA) will be canceled and your employer shall refile or re-submit it as a new application. 

6. Should I be legally married to qualify for SSS maternity benefits this 2021?

The Expanded Maternity Leave Law doesn’t require claimants to be married to be eligible for maternity benefits. All female workers who have met the required number of contributions can apply for SSS maternity benefit regardless of her civil status or the legitimacy of the child.

Moreover, unmarried pregnant employees can also apply as a Solo Parent upon submission of supporting documents. 

7. How long should I wait for my SSS maternity benefits payment?

Your maternity leave benefits payment should be given by your employer within 30 days after filing your application. The SSS will reimburse the payment of your employer once proof of payments are submitted. 

8. Can my employer terminate my employment after I avail the 105 days of leave credits?

Those who avail of the SSS maternity benefit shall have the security of tenure (Section 15). Availing of leave credits should not be a basis of demotion or termination. 

PhilHealth Maternity Benefits Guide

SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits - philhealth maternity benefits

What is PhilHealth Maternity Benefit?

PhilHealth maternity benefits refer to social health insurance coverage that provides women who are about to give birth with financial access to health care before, during, and after child delivery. It consists of complete essential health care services for qualified PhilHealth members throughout their pregnancy and childbirth.

Who Can Receive PhilHealth Maternity Benefits?

For PhilHealth members, here are the conditions to qualify for maternity benefits:

  • Active membership with qualifying PhilHealth contributions
    • Employed members: At least three posted monthly PhilHealth contributions within six months before availing of maternity benefits
    • Self-employed or unemployed voluntary members: At least nine posted monthly contributions before availing the maternity benefits
    • OFW and sponsored members: PhilHealth membership is within the validity period
  • Have not used up the 45-day regular benefit limit
  • Admitted to a PhilHealth-accredited facility for not less than 24 hours
  • Attended by a PhilHealth-accredited doctor

Note: Under the Universal Healthcare Law, PhilHealth members may still avail of maternity benefits even if they don’t consistently pay their monthly premiums as long as they meet the required minimum number of paid contributions.

What are the PhilHealth Benefits for Maternity?

SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits - philhealth benefits for maternity

Under the Expanded Maternity Leave Law, PhilHealth is mandated to cover the health care needs of its active pregnant members and their newborns through different maternity benefit packages[10].

1. Antenatal Care Package

  • Prenatal consultation
  • Essential health care services

2. Maternity Care Package

  • Essential health care services during the entire pregnancy until the mother gives birth
  • Follow-up visits from three to seven days after childbirth

3. Normal Spontaneous Delivery Package

  • Essential health care services for normal, low-risk childbirth and post-delivery period
  • Follow-up visits from three to seven days after childbirth

4. Maternity Benefits for Other Types of Childbirth

PhilHealth also covers health care services for caesarian delivery and other types of delivery in any accredited hospital such as breech extraction.

5. Newborn Care Package

Newborns within their first hours of life, whether normal or caesarian delivery, can receive the following PhilHealth benefits:

  • Newborn screening test
  • Newborn hearing screening test
  • Essential newborn care (eye prophylaxis, weighing, first dosage of hepatitis B and BCG vaccines, etc.)

6. Z Benefits for Premature and Small Newborns

These are benefit packages for expectant moms (24 to 36 and 6/7 weeks pregnant) who are at risk of premature delivery, as well as premature newborns (fetal age of 24 weeks to less than 37 weeks) and small babies (500g to 2,499g fetal weight).

How Much is the Maternity Benefit in PhilHealth?

PhilHealth shoulders the following child delivery costs for qualified members:

PhilHealth Maternity BenefitCoverage
Antenatal Care PackagePHP 1,500 in PhilHealth-accredited non-hospital facilities
Maternity Care PackagePHP 6,500 (PhilHealth-accredited hospitals) / PHP 8,000 (Maternity clinics, infirmaries, birthing homes, and other accredited non-hospital facilities)
Normal Spontaneous Delivery PackagePHP 5,000 (accredited hospitals) / PHP 6,500 (accredited non-hospital facilities)
Maternity Benefits for Other Types of ChildbirthPHP 19,000 (caesarian delivery) / PHP 12,120 (vaginal delivery after C-section/breech extraction) / PHP 9,700 (complicated vaginal delivery)
Newborn Care PackagePHP 1,750
Z Benefits for Premature and Small NewbornsPHP 600 to PHP 4,000 (prevention of premature delivery) / PHP 35,000 to PHP 135,000 (premature newborns with a fetal age of 24 weeks to less than 32 weeks) / PHP 24,000 to PHP 71,000 (premature newborns with a fetal age of 32 weeks to less than 37 weeks)

Final Thoughts

To make sure that you’ll get SSS and PhilHealth maternity benefits, check or update your membership status with these agencies. Ask for a Member Data Record (MDR) from PhilHealth and a Static Information Sheet from the SSS. You also need to check your SSS and PhilHealth contributions to confirm if your employer is remitting them.

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