PH ready to contain Mers—Palace
Malacañang allayed fears that the country is not ready to combat the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (Mers) amid the outbreak of the disease in South Korea.
In a radio interview Sunday, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. countered the claim of Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines that private hospitals are not equipped to handle Mers cases.
“Sana ay alalahanin natin na sa lahat ng panahon ang ating pamahalaan ay hindi nagpapabaya bagkus ay pinapaigting pa ang kahandaan, hindi lamang sa MERS-CoV o sa Ebola, pero sa lahat ng maaaring banta sa ating kalusugan at kapakinabangan,” Coloma said.
(Let us remember that the government is prepared at all times and that it is intensifying its preparations to respond not only to Mers or Ebola, but to all threats to our health and well-being.)
Coloma cited the steps that the govenrment initiated when a Filipino nurse last February was diagnosed of Mers.
“Katulad po ng naganap noong isang taon ay nasubukan naman po ‘yung kakayahan ng ating pamahalaan na gumawa ng tamang paraan ng contact tracing at tamang paraan ng pag-isolate sa mga maaaring naapektuhan nito. Naisagawa naman po natin ‘yan sa isang mahusay na paraan,” he said.
(Just like we did last year, the readiness of the government was tested when it conducted contact tracing and the correct way to isolate those who have been diagnosed with the disease. We have accomplished these steps in an excellent manner.)
The Palace official emphasized that Filipinos living and working in the Middle East should take the necessary precautionary measures to prevent contracting the said disease as their first line of defense.
“Patuloy na nananawagan ang pamahalaan sa ating mga kababayan na sundin ang mga kaukulang preventive measure at infection control protocol at maging ang mga local health regulation sa kanilang lugar na pinaglilingkuran,” he said.
(The government urges Filipinos to follow the necessary preventive measures, infection control protocol and local health regulation in the areas where they are working.)
The first case of Mers in the country was recorded last February when a 32-year-old female nurse arrived from Saudi Arabia tested positive for the said disease. This was followed by the positive Mers cases of three Filipino nurses in Saudi Arabia last March.
On Saturday, the Philippine Embassy in Riyadh said that a Filipino overseas worker has acquired the disease.
Fifteen people have died in South Korea due to the deadly disease. DPL
OFW in Saudi Arabia tests positive for Mers
Filipino female nurse PH’s 1st MERS case; DOH tracking contacts
3 Filipino female nurses have MERS virus
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.