Man reported missing in Volcano Island

Maris Federez   •   January 31, 2020   •   798

Marlon Deteral

The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and the Batangas Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) will be conducting a search for a 26-year-old man who had gone missing following the Taal Volcano eruption.

This, after a mother sought the help of the UNTV News and Rescue team to find her son whom they last saw amid the confusion brought about by the Taal volcano eruption.

Marilyn Deteral said she and her husband, together with their other children left their house in Barangay Alas-as in San Nicolas, Batangas when the volcano erupted.

Alas-as is one of the barangays located at the Taal Volcano Island.

Marlon, her son, was not with them at that time they evacuated and was neither at the evacuation center they were sent to.

A neighbor told them that Marlon went back home to look for them. He has not gone back to the evacuation center.

It is now three weeks since Marilyn reported her missing child but until now, the family has not received any update.

She said her family has already accepted her son’s fate.

“Sana po matulungan niyo po ako na mahukay po ang aking (anak) doon sa Alas-as po na hanggang ngayon po ay di pa po nahuhukay. Siguro po nadaganan po siya sa bahay namin dahil po bumalik siya dun dahil tiningnan po kami, ay wala na po kami doon,” Marilyn said. — (from the report of Vincent Arboleda) /mbmf

OCD denies supplying disinfectant solution that caused police doctor’s death

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 9, 2020

The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) has denied that the disinfectant solution supplied to the quarantine facilities of the Philippine National Police (PNP) which caused the death of a police doctor came from them.

National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) Spokesperson Mark Timbal said the OCD only supplied the PNP with food, janitorial services, Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), and other medical equipment.

“Iyong ginamit nilang pang spray hindi po sa amin iyon. Kaya po ang gagawin namin ay makikipagtulungan kami sa PNP to determine itong bagay na ito to an investigation (The spray they used did not come from us. So we will coordinate with the PNP to determine this through an investigation),” he said.

Timbal also said they are prepared to face investigation, if necessary, to determine who needs to be held accountable for the death of Dr. Casey Gutierrez who lost his life after inhaling the disinfectant used at the Philippine Sports Arena Quarantine Facility.

“We welcome the investigation para po malinawan iyong nangyari dyan sa facility na iyan at sa kasamahan nating doctor (to shed light on what happened in the facility and to our fellow doctor),” he said.

On May 24, Gutierrez was said to have had difficulty in breathing after he reportedly inhaled the chemical from the disinfectant spray used during the decontamination procedure. He died on May 30.

Meanwhile, four other police officers were also admitted to the hospital after inhaling the said chemical. –AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

Duterte fires OCD Deputy Administrator Kristoffer James Purisima

Marje Pelayo   •   May 22, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has dismissed Kristoffer James Purisima as deputy administrator assistant secretary of the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD).

According to Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque, the President decided to remove Purisima from office due to “loss of trust and confidence.”

Roque could not tell, however, under what circumstance prompted the President to fire Purisima.

Wala na po akong ibang impormasyon (I don’t have additional information) other than he was terminated due to loss of trust and confidence,” Roque confirmed.

The OCD is the government’s main unit responsible for disaster preparedness and response in times of calamity.

Prior to his position in OCD, Purisima served as spokesperson of Task Force Bangon Marawi. MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)

OCD to lead government contact tracing efforts – IATF

Maris Federez   •   April 12, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) on Sunday, April 12, announced that the Office of Civil Defense will now lead the contact tracing efforts of the government amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis.

IATF-EID spokesperson Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles, on a virtual presser on Sunday, said that to enhance the contact tracing of the government, disclosure of personal information of COVID-19 cases will now be mandatory or required.

“The Office of Civil Defense (OCD), in coordination with other agencies and Local Government Units (LGUs) as may be appropriate, shall hereafter lead the contact-tracing efforts of the government,” Nograles said.

The IATF spokesperson said this is among the new set of guidelines that were approved by the IATF-EID on Wednesday (April 8).

He also said that the OCD and the Department of Health (DOH) are directed to enter into a data-sharing agreement (DSA) in accordance with the “Data Privacy Act” or Republic Act10173.

Contact tracing involves three basic steps namely contact identification, contact listing, and contact follow-up, based on the World Health Organization (WHO) definition.

Besides leading contact-tracing efforts, the OCD shall also be the one to prepare an inventory of all medicines and medical supplies donated to the national government under Administrative Order No. 27 signed by Duterte last March 31.

As of Saturday (April 11), the DOH reported a total of 4,428 Covid-19 cases, with 247 deaths and 157 recoveries. – mbmf

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