For months now, our medical frontliners have not had a decent sleep. They live in constant fear of getting COVID-19 just by reporting for duty every day. They risk their very own lives and that of their loved ones just to help stem the spread of the coronavirus and save the lives of people they do not even know. They are also very tired and yet they keep on going.
It is for these very reasons that I have been asking, at least the residents of Manila, to take some of their precious timeout and say “Thank you” if and when they see or come across a doctor, a nurse, or any medical practitioner or health worker for that matter.
I guess being generous with these two words is the least everyone can do to show appreciation and gratitude for the life-threatening situation that health workers or medical frontliners brave every day of their lives at least for the past five months or so.
This is the only thing I ask of our residents while we in the city government do everything within our means to alleviate their present situation, also as a way of thanking them and letting them know and feel that we are here for them just as they are constantly there for all of us.
I and Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna have vowed that the city government of Manila will not stop supporting the health frontliners in every way possible.
I hope the culture of saying “Thank you” to medical frontliners becomes contagious and “infects” everyone, who must bear in mind that these days, we do not need politicians to keep us safe from the coronavirus. What we need are doctors, nurses, and medical frontliners.
We in government are here only to formulate and enforce certain policies that would aid those who get infected with COVID-19 or prevent the citizens from contracting the illness. But once they are admitted in the hospital, government officials and politicans will no longer be of any use or help to them.
The recovery rate in Manila is fairly high because of the dedication of the city’s medical workers which the city government complements with caring for their own welfare by hiring more medical professionals.
The purpose of this move is to ensure that the health frontliners in the six hospitals being run by the city government will not be overworked. We simply cannot allow a repeat of the past situation in our hospitals before I took over, where health personnel worked hours beyond their supposed shifts due to lack of enough manpower.
Since the pandemic began, I have signed about a thousand papers of new hires and promotions of personnel serving in the medical sector of the city.
We are also currently hiring medical technologists to help in its fight against the COVID-19. These medtechs will be assigned at the Sta. Ana Hospital which houses the city’s polymerase chain reaction (PCR) machine being used to analyze samples taken from swab tests.
These moves are but part of efforts to beef up medical health workers in the city, amid the continuing rise in the number of COVID cases in the country and particularly, in the city.
The Sta. Ana Hospital headed by Dr. Grace Padilla as its director serves as the city’s center of COVID treatment, being the location of the Manila Infectious Disease Control Center (MIDCC). The city’s COVID test laboratory is also located in the hospital, which has dedicated two floors for COVID patients alone.
Once in a while, we also shut down our hospitals when our doctors and nurses and other medical staff suffer a contagion or already get the virus either among themselves or from their patients.
We do this to give our medical staff a breather or some sort of a rest from their daily tiresome routine, for them to fully recover from their illness and inevitable burnout.
Just like the rest of us, our health works are human beings who get infected, tired, or overwhelmed whenever there is a surge of COVID cases and giving them a breathing room can make them focus on their own health and safety, while their workplace gets sanitized in every nook and cranny.
They are back to work in no time, refreshed and all the more determined to treat the sick and save precious lives.
So once again, I ask each of you to say “Thank you when you come across a doctor or nurse or health personnel whether from a public or a private institution, in the street, elevator, a store, anywhere. I’m sure this will inspire and get them going even stronger amid the continuing pandemic.
Gaya ng paulit-ulit kong sinasabi, kailangan ko ang tulong ninyong lahat. Walang magmamalasakit sa Maynila kundi tayo ding mga Batang Maynila. Manila, God first!
For updates on latest developments in the city of Manila, please visit my Facebook account — “IskoMoreno Domagoso.”