Press Release
May 11, 2014

Nancy to DOH: Are you still on top of the situation?
Senator fears possible medical emergency

Concerned with the reports of women and children still suffering months after tragedies struck the country, Senator Nancy Binay expressed fears of a possible medical emergency.

"We hear it in the news so often that it's starting to sound like it's normal for victims of tragedies like typhoon Yolanda, Santi, and the armed conflict in Zamboanga City to still be without access to medical services months after they were displaced. I think it is important we ask the the Department of Health at this point if they are still in control of the situation," the lady senator said.

Save the Children, an international health agency, has earlier come out with a report on the health conditions of the victims of typhoon Yolanda, detailing how in six months the government has achieved little in ensuring that that shelter and medical attention are provided.

Much like the issue with the victims of typhoon Yolanda, those displaced by other natural calamities as well as the armed conflict in Zamboanga City are also suffering due to the lack of medical services.

The senator has earlier called the attention of concerned agencies following reports of deaths and prostitution inside evacuation centers in Zamboanga City. She lambasted that months after the siege, the government has yet to provide transition sites and medical services, forcing women to sell themselves in order to survive and causing the conditions of those who are sick to worsen.

Following the health department's declaration of measles outbreak in several areas in Metro Manila, Senator Binay filed Senate Resolution No. 431 which seeks an investigation into the government's immunization program for measles for which P2.85 billion has been earmarked.

"The government must act immediately when tragedies strike or when there is this possibility of an outbreak. The more we wait, the more lives we lose," Binay suggested.

"Women and children are the most vulnerable here and the reports of an outbreak of an illness which should have been stamped out long ago, the cases of prostitution within temporary shelters, as well as the lack of medical attention for the sick and pregnant women are disturbing," the senator said.

The report recently released by Save the Children indicated a sluggish pace in restoring medical services in the Visayas where typhoon Yolanda caused massive destruction.

The agency estimated that 45,000 babies have been born without full medical care in these areas as only 50% of the health facilities are operational, six months after the tragedy.

"Nakakabahala po ang impormasyon na ang mga buntis ay napipilitang manganak sa kung saan na lamang dahil sa kawalan ng mga ospital at klinika. Sana po ay agad na matugunan ng gobyerno ang pangangailangan ng ating mga kababayan sa mga lugar na nasalanta at nasa gitna ng kaguluhan," Binay said.

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