The Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Department of Health (DOH) on Sunday signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) on the deployment of police medical personnel to hospitals experiencing a surge in coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) cases.
PNP chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, said the agreement will “concretize collaborative efforts in the implementation of the said program.”
Shortly after the MOA signing ceremony, 10 nurses of the PNP Health Service were formally deployed to the DOH.
“The existing manpower of hospitals is not enough to cater to the health care needs of severe and critical Covid-19 positive patients hence we are thankful for the additional support and manpower from the PNP who will be assigned in Covid wards,” DOH-National Capital Region Director Gloria J. Balboa said
Balboa also thanked the PNP for its steadfast commitment to assisting the government’s pandemic response efforts.
“We also like to extend our gratitude for your steadfast in doing your job in the fight against Covid-19 since its start in 2020, to provide border control, rain or shine, and minimize the spread of the virus and also in managing our isolation facilities and vaccination centers to ensure safety and security of our health workers and patients, and lastly, this provision of additional manpower to our public and private hospitals like the Cardinal Santos Medical Center. This is concrete proof of our cooperation as one country, by working together to recover as one,” she added.
Eleazar, meanwhile, said the PNP is more than prepared to support government programs for the promotion of health and for the benefit of the Filipino people.
“This pandemic has taken a toll on our beloved organization as many of our police front-liners have been infected and lost their lives due to this pandemic, yet we stood our ground without hesitation in selflessly serving our community and we shall continue to do so,” he added.
Last month, President Rodrigo Duterte appealed to the medical personnel of the police and the military to help hospitals that are overwhelmed with Covid-19 patients.
AFP deploys 8 nurses to Lung Center
Meanwhile, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Monday deployed eight nurses to augment the healthcare workforce of the Lung Center of the Philippines (LCP) in caring for Covid-19 patients.
AFP Surgeon General, Col. Fatima Claire Navarro led the send-off ceremony for the Nurse Corps Officers at the Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City.
“We are all equally affected by the impact of the pandemic but in situations when our fellow healthcare workers are feeling low, a friend or even a stranger who will extend sincere help expecting nothing in return, maybe the beacon of hope,” Navarro said.
While noting that infectious diseases or pandemics cannot be eliminated, Navarro said military medical personnel can be the helping hand while “awaiting our return to the new normal”.
Two teams from the AFP Nurse Corps will undergo one month of deployment in accordance with the memorandum of agreement entered into by the AFP and the Department of Health.
The first is an all-reservists team composed of 2nd Lt. Federico Muyco, 2nd Lt. Joey Cabaluna, and 2nd Lt. Laviña Augusto while the second team is composed of 1st Lt. Fernando Velarde, 2nd Lt. Raul Ramos, 2nd Lt. Abner Andamon, 2nd Lt. Chrissen Valmonte, and 2nd Lt. Leslie Ann Muñez.
Four of the nurses were previously deployed in Davao while two came from Cebu and two others from the V. Luna Medical Center.
All of the Nurse Corps officers tested negative of Covid-19 prior to their deployment and will undergo the same RT-PCR testing every two weeks for monitoring.
The teams’ deployment will be reviewed before the end of their assignment if there will be a need for an extension.
“The AFP commends our team of military nurses for answering the call to assist healthcare workers who are in the frontlines against the pandemic. Their dedication, strength, and bravery will boost the morale of their fellow frontline workers and will definitely help the government in addressing the needs of our people,” AFP chief Gen. Jose Faustino Jr. said.
Meanwhile, the AFP over the weekend announced that it has launched the “Dugong Kawal-Blood Donor Network” last October 8.
The “Dugong Kawal-Blood Donor Network” is a Facebook group initiated by AFP Deputy Chief-of-Staff for Operations, Maj. Gen. Edgardo de Leon, with the program being implemented by the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Personnel.
It was created to provide AFP personnel with a platform to immediately communicate and respond to their blood needs.
It is open to all active officers and enlisted personnel, permanent civilian employees, and their dependents, the group aims to ease coordination among members.
The group allows any AFP personnel in need of blood to request for themselves, fellow personnel, or their dependents.
Nearby members may signify their intent to donate to the requesting party through the group and talk about the details of the donation such as location and other requirements.
This group will create a pool of blood donors in the AFP that will serve as the public domain of information and channel for obtaining matches for personnel in need of blood. (PNA)