VP Duterte turns nostalgic as she gives tribute to doctors, other Covid-19 frontliners

Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte on Wednesday, Dec. 21, expressed admiration to the doctors and frontliners during the Covid-19 pandemic, acknowledging the risks they took to serve their patients.

Vice President Sara Duterte during the Davao Regional Medical Center and Resident Physician Association commencement ceremony in Tagum City on Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022. (OVP photo)

During the Davao Regional Medical Center and Resident Physician Association Commencement Ceremony at the Tagum City Historical and Cultural Center, the official even turned nostalgic at the thought of what she could’ve done if she went ahead and pursued her dream of becoming a doctor.

“At the height of the Covid 19 pandemic, I somehow had a moment of nostalgia with things like: If I had become a doctor, I’d most certainly be among those who were at the frontline, risking their lives to save others,” she said.

The Vice President then thanked the medical doctors, health care professionals, and frontliners.

Duterte also congratulated the graduating resident physicians of the Davao Regional Medical Center, saying that they make a “valuable addition to the profession of medicine.”

“This milestone is a testament to your unwavering commitment to providing quality and reliable healthcare while remaining true to the call of service amid the present challenges faced by the health sector,” she said.

She also lauded the role of local chief executives like her when she was mayor of Davao City because they, too, served the frontlines and partnered with medical health professionals.

Those in the frontlines delivered “health and basic services to the people, ensuring that they become our (local executives) partners in curbing the spread of the virus, and keeping people in our communities well informed as we had to contend with fear, confusion, panic, and the misery of losing loved ones due to Covid.”

However, despite the strides made in the country’s response to the pandemic, Duterte acknowledged that there is still an ongoing battle against Covid-19.

She called on the doctors to work together with the government in “ensuring wider access to affordable and quality care for your patients and creating more opportunities for medical advancement in Mindanao.”

The Vice President said the government will always support the collective mission of uplifting the country’s healthcare through improved medical training, responsive services, and quality research.

“I urge you to proactively work with us as we overcome the challenges in our healthcare in the post-pandemic transition, build stronger Filipino communities and families in Davao de Oro, and march on toward the realization of our hope of a healthier and more empowered nation,” Duterte asserted.