Buy drugs for COVID-19 treatment, not face shields — Mayor Isko tells nat'l gov't

Published September 6, 2021, 12:06 PM

by Noreen Jazul

“Gamot na muna kesa plastic, ‘yun ang bilhin natin (Buy medicines instead of plastic).”

This was the call of Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso to national government agencies leading the country’s COVID-19 pandemic response.


Domagoso underscored the need for experimental drugs to treat COCID-19 such as Remdesivir and Tocilizumab.

“Ang daming naghahanap ng Tocilizumab…Itong gamot na to nakakatulong ito sa tao,” the mayor said.

Domagoso said 1,000 vials of Tociluzumab will cost around P25 million, while 10,000 vials of Tocilizumab and Remdesivir will cost roughly around P200 million.

“Ako payo ko talaga sa kanila, huwag face shield ang bilhin ninyo. Tocilizumab ang bilhin nyo. Remdesivir ang bilhin nyo. Oxygen, makina sa ospital ang bilhin nyo. Yun ang kailangan ng tao kung talagang mahal natin ang tao, sabi nyo. Kung kayo’y para sa tao sabi nyo (My advice to them is don’t buy face shield. Buy Tocilizumab. Buy Remdesivir. Buy oxygen, machines for hospitals. Those are what the people need if we really love our people as you say. If this is really for the people as you say),” Domagoso said.

Domagoso said it’s surprising that no additional hospitals were built after almost two years of battling the COVID-19 pandemic, but billions were spent for the procurement of face shields.

The mayor added that face shields are just a burden to the people.

“Gamitin natin ang faceshield sa ospital. Wag natin irequire ang tao. Wala na nga tayo nabibigay na trabaho, pinagagastos pa natin ang tao. Wala naman science (dito). (Let’s use face shields in the hosptal. Let’s not require the people (to buy them). We cant even provide them jobs, and yet we’re asking them to spend more. There’s no science behind this),” the mayor said. He added that the Philippines may be the only country that uses face shields or made it mandatory for its citizens to use them.