Robredo takes patients’ struggles personal

Published April 21, 2021, 8:32 AM

by Raymund Antonio

Vice President Leni Robredo has some good news: Yesterday, her team was able to save just in time a senior citizen whose oxygen saturation level dropped to 56. 

Vice President Leni Robredo (JANSEN ROMERO / MANILA BULLETIN)

Robredo said there were good days and bad days in her office’s newest initiative, the Bayanihan E-Konsulta that can be accessed via free data for both COVID-19 and non-COVID patients in the National Capital Region Plus (NCR Plus) bubble.  

“Hindi maiiwasan maging personal sa amin ang pinagdadaanan ng mga pasyente na humihingi ng tulong (We can’t help but make personal the struggles of our patients who are asking for help),” she said in a Facebook post Tuesday night, April 20.

Yesterday, for instance, was a success story. 

Robredo narrated that the oxygen level of a patient from Bulacan dropped to 56 when the normal oxygen saturation level should be 95 and above. The patient needed to be brought to a hospital and probably intubated.

Her team reached out to the government’s One Hospital Command Center (OHCC) to look for an available bed at an intensive care unit (ICU). 

Almost all of the hospitals were full capacity, except for a government hospital in Quezon City. The patient was seventh in line. 

“Sige na, kaysa wala (That’s okay, instead of nothing),” Robredo mused. 

An ambulance picked up the patient from Bulacan past one in the morning as the vice president recalled they felt agitated that it was already too late to save him. 

Her team made sure that the patient had an oxygen tank upon arrival soon in the hospital. 

“Bawa’t maliit na hakbang, para kaming nabubunutan ng tinik (For every small step, it feels like a thorn was pulled from us),” Robredo said, adding that the patient’s grandchild eventually updated them that the patient has been intubated and his oxygen saturation level is at 98 again.

“Iba iba yung kuwento. Hindi laging good news (The stories are not always the same. They’re not always good news),” she lamented. 

When she receives reports that a patient has already expired while waiting for a hospital bed, she becomes disheartened and wonders if she should be so involved in her office’s operations. 

But Robredo said she felt the country’s healthcare workers shoulder the burden more. 

“Kaya lalong saludo sa ating healthcare workers na sumasabak sa giyera araw araw. Maliban sa pagod, yung bigat sa pakiramdam na hindi pa din sapat yung lahat na ibinuhos mo para maisalba ang buhay ng isang tao. Yun yung pinakamahirap (That’s why I salute our healthcare workers that go into war every day. Aside from the exhaustion, the heavy feeling of giving your all and still not being enough to save a life. That’s the most difficult),” she shared. 

In the end, Robredo can only hope that the government can fix the problem of an overwhelmed healthcare system.

“Para wala nang nawawala na walang kalaban laban (So that no one has to die without a fight),” she said.