DOH Plan To Pull Out Doctors, Nurses For COVID-19 Fight In Metro Manila, Frontliners React
DOH – Some medical workers are hesitating to move to National Captial Region (NCR) despite the call to do so.
Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte granted the appeal of medical workers to reimpose the 2nd strictest lockdown level in Metro Manila and other nearby provinces. They appealed to the government following the surge of coronavirus cases in the country.
The epicenter of the virus, Metro Manila, has been under general community quarantine (GCQ) since June 1. COVID-19 frontliners called for a “timeout” to prevent the collapse of the country’s health care system.
Based on a report from ABS-CBN News, the Department of Health (DOH) is planning to pull out doctors and nurses that are deployed in isolated and depressed areas in the country to move to the National Capital Region (NCR). This plan has raised concerns among medical workers.
Doctors to the Barrios (DDTB) program member Dr. Carissa Rulla said there are only twenty (20) doctors working for more than 400,000 people in Tawi-Tawi Province. She said there are only 4 COVID-19 cases there but there is no assurance that the number of patients will not rise because the locally stranded individuals (LSI) from Manila are returning to their provinces.
“Sila ‘yung mga tao na hindi pa nakakakita ng doctor, hindi pa nakakatikim ng healthcare services ng government. Kung ma pull out kami sa areas namin, sino na ang maiiwan sa kanila?” she said.
Dr. Rulla said that aside from the LSIs, they also have to monitor the deportees coming from Sabah, Malaysia.
Before the pandemic, many provinces are already deprived of healthcare workers. Filipino Nurses United Secretary-General Jocelyn Andamo said if the government pursue their plan to pull out COVID-19 frontliners, their fellow medical workers in the province will suffer further.
“Kung ipu-pull out natin[ health workers], mas lalong kawawa po ang ating mga kababayan sa probinsya, lalo ngayon sa stage natin, hindi natin masasabing na-contain na ang pagkalat ng COVID-19…”
“Ano na lang mangyayari sa communities naming if we leave them?” she said.
Watch Rulla and Andamo’s interview below:
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