Phl shows good record in vaccination program despite criticisms — Duterte

Maris Federez   •   April 20, 2021   •   253

 

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte believes that the government’s vaccination program is doing good despite the criticism thrown at it.

This, after vaccine czar and National Task Force Against COVID-19 Chief Implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. reported to the president the status of the country’s vaccination program on Monday night’s Talk to the Nation aired over PTV-4.

Galvez said that the Philippines now ranks 3rd among the ASEAN member countries in vaccination, from the former 8th in ranking when the country had just started its vaccination rollout.

The Philippines also ranks 41st among 173 countries and 14th out of 47 Asian countries.

“Sa ngayon po number three po tayo at the same time 41st po tayo out of 173 countries, at number 14 po tayo sa 47 Asian countries. So hindi po tayo nahuhuli, nandoon po tayo sa may bandang per — mga ano, upper 25 percent,” Galvez said.

“Well, maganda ang record natin in spite of unfounded criticism which — anyway, we expect it. But the Philippines is able to get the upper berth, I said, of the countries that are inoculated. Maganda ang record niyan and to think that people were almost in a quandary where to get the next vaccination,” President Duterte said.

“You know, for whatever it is that really work to them, we were able to make a go at least, not everybody at one time, but we have vaccinated a lot of people. I am happy that we have completed the vaccination of the medical people, yung tinatawag nilang frontliner,” he added.

The President said the country is not really left behind as far as vaccination against COVID-19 is concerned.

“So nakita mo naman na hindi pala tayo ‘yong pinakamahina, mataas nga ‘yong atin. It goes to show that we are really working very hard, especially Secretary Galvez, to get the vaccines here in the Philippines on time. Though it is not as fast as people would like to expect, the fact that, I said, we have occupied a certain position, we are number 15 sa ano? Number three?” he said.

“Well, it speaks well of the effort of your office to at least come to a more than an acceptable performance in the matter of — well, the fight against COVID as far as the Philippines is concerned,” the President added.

Galvez has also reported that 965,960 medical frontline workers who belong in A1 category have received the first dose of the vaccination. From this number, 198,534 have already received the 2nd dose.

The vaccine czar added that 132,948 belonging to the A2 category and 180,315 from the A3 category have received the first dose of the vaccine. —/mbmf

DOH, not endorsing steam inhalation or ‘suob’ as treatment for COVID-19

Marje Pelayo   •   May 11, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines — Steam inhalation or ‘suob’ has become popular as a home remedy to relieve patients having difficulty breathing particularly COVID-19 infected individuals since the pandemic started.

But the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Department of Health (DOH) do not endorse this method in treating COVID-19.

“Unang-una ang (suob) po is like a steam inhalation, so when you are doing it with your family na hindi kayo nasa inyong kuwarto, maaring maikalat pa nito ang infection,” explained DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.

“It aerosolized iyong air so iyong virus might stay longer in the air and your family member might get infected,” she added.

Health advocate Dr. Tony Leachon is among those who do not believe in steam inhalation for COVID-19.

“Makakasama pa nga iyan dahil magbubuga ka nyan ng mga droplets that will actually create more problems for the people,” he noted.

But for Dr. Dale Pasco, a proponent of steam inhalation believes it could play a vital role in treating COVID-10 patients.

He himself experienced its efficacy when he recommended it to his sister who had COVID-19 and to more than a hundred of his patients who consulted him.

Dr. Pasco also cites a study in Italy that showed a favorable result of steam inhalation to a COVID-positive patient.

“Iyong study na iyon they have proven. We have concluded na ang temperature na 56 degrees na nasa steam inhalation o nasa sa suob it really kills the virus,” he noted.

Dr. Pasco said he already sent a letter to the DOH, the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), and even to the Office of the President to conduct a study on the matter but to no avail.

“Kung sana naaprubahan yung proposal ko we could have already gone back to normal which I don’t think we do need vaccines anymore,” he concluded. MNP (with reports from Rey Pelayo)

Manila distributes 4th tranche of food box assistance under COVID-19 Food Security Program

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 10, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Manila Local Government Unit (LGU) has begun the distribution of the fourth tranche of food box assistance under the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Food Security Program (FSP).

The distribution, through the joint efforts of the city’s Department of Public Services, Department of Engineering and Public Works, and the Manila Traffic and Parking Bureau, began on May 8.

The target beneficiaries are about 700,000 families living in Manila. As of May 9 at 5:00 p.m., 139,000 food boxes have already been distributed to 122 barangays in District 1.

Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso said the program aims to ease the public’s economic burden amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ito ay iyong pinasa naming batas, sa tulong ni Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna at mga konsehal noong Disyembre, upang ibsan ang inyong mga tustusin buwan-buwan at para lumaki naman ang inyong savings. Dahil sa epekto ng inflation or hirap ng buhay ng tao, nagmamahal ang produkto, hindi naman tumataas ang sweldo (This is the law we enacted with the help of Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna and the councilors in December to ease the monthly expenses and for families to increase their savings. Due to inflation or life’s difficulties, price of commodities increase but the salary is still the same),” he said.

Around P3-billion have already been allocated since the implementation of the FSP in February, wherein three kilos of rice, 16 pieces of canned goods, and eight sachets of coffee will be packed and distributed to Manila residents. The program will continue until July this year. AAC

New PNP Chief assures no shaming, exercise for health protocol violators

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 10, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines — New Philippine National Police (PNP) chief PGen. Guillermo Eleazar has assured that health protocol violators will not be shamed or be forced to exercise.

Eleazar clarified that individuals who are not wearing face masks or are not wearing face masks properly will be accosted but will be sent home after proper documentation and process. Violators will be taken to the nearest police station and will be investigated before receiving proper sanctions.

Walang makukulong dahil sa hindi pagsusuot lamang ng mask. Walang masasaktan. Walang mag- eexercise. Walang ipahihiya (No one will be imprisoned just because of not wearing masks. No one will be hurt. There will be no exercise. There will be no shaming),” he said.

If violators will be fined, Eleazar said, they will be given a ticket. If they will do community service, it will be scheduled. Violators will not be charged unless necessary.

Eleazar said the PNP will coordinate with the local government to make sure the city has holding facilities so as not to crowd police stations.

Ang bilin ko sa inyo, ang bilin ni Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año bago kayo mag-arestuhan tingnan nyo muna kung may paglalagyan kayo sa inyong opisina. Dahil ang ayaw naman natin kapag inaresto niyo iyan ay kumpol kumpol pa doon. So coordinate with your local government unit at barangay (My directive, as well as the directive of DILG Secretary Eduardo Año is, before any arrest, make sure there is a place in your office where you can put them. We don’t want them to cramp in one area once arrested. So, coordinate with your local government unit and the barangay), he said. -AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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