As all of you probably know by now, I too, unfortunately got infected with COVID-19 despite all the necessary precautions I have been taking. We knew it was coming and I have learned to accept that it is part of what is commonly known as “occupational hazards.”
By the time this column comes out though, I may have already resumed my work since the medical certificate issued to me by my doctors, namely Sta. Ana Hospital Director Dr. Grace Padilla, cardiologist Dr. Paul Lucas and Manila Infectious Disease Control Center (MIDCC) chief Dr. Nerissa Sescon stated that I can go back to work on Aug. 29. I was admitted Aug. 15 and was discharged on Aug. 25.
Before me, my working partner, Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna, was also discharged from the same hospital on Aug. 19. She contracted the virus a week before I got infected.
Both of us suffered mild symptoms and are thankful that we were already fully vaccinated when the virus hit us.
The two of us have been constantly campaigning for everyone to get vaccinated because although there is no promise of immunity, studies show that the vaccines do provide protection from falling severe or critical in case one gets infected with the coronavirus.
In behalf of Vice Mayor Honey, I would like to express our profuse gratitude to all those who have offered prayers, well wishes and other forms of support before, during and even after the period our confinement. Above all, we thank God for our quick recovery.
Having had to experience first-hand the services of Sta. Ana Hospital which is the city of Manila’s COVID center, I am extremely proud of and so grateful to our city’s medical and health frontliners taking care of the patients there. Our COVID center has indeed, really arrived.
In the same breadth, I am equally proud of our fellow city officials and employees who showed to one and all that the system we have established in the city government really works, similar to muscle memory.
During our physical absence in City Hall, normal operations went on without hitches.
These basic services include the mass vaccination program headed by Dr. Poks Pangan, chief of the Manila Health Department and his assistant, Dr. Ed Santos.
As I have vowed, the city government’s mass inoculation will be carried out even on holidays and weekends and for extended periods of time, for as long as there are vaccines available. I stand pat on my opinion that vaccination must indeed, be faster than the rate of infection.
The delivery of benefits for senior citizens, persons with disabilities, solo parents and students under the supervision of the Manila department of social welfare headed by Re Fugoso and the Office of Senior Citizens’ Affairs under Marjun Isidro.
The cleanup operations under the office of Manila Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office chief Arnel Angeles and the department of public services under its head, Kenneth Amurao also went on as usual.
All our housing and school projects also continued under the stewardship of City Engineer Armand Andres, city architect Pepito Balmoris and city electrician Randy Sadac.
Meantime, many have expressed concern that once Vice Mayor Honey and I resume our functions, we may get exposed again.
We are fully aware of this but we cannot cower in fear and let that fear get in the way of our work. We have to continue discharging our duties specially since we are in the middle of a pandemic and the people of Manila depend on their government heavily to help tide them over.
Both Vice Mayor Honey and I will keep our promise to our fellow Manilans that no matter what happens, we will continue to be there for them, doing everything humanly possible to make their lives better.
We can only hope and pray to the good Lord that he will continue protecting us and the rest of the city as we continuously perform our mandate and offer the best we can for the benefit of the residents of Manila.
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 – ‘Isko Moreno Domagoso.’