Press Release
August 2, 2020


With more than 98,000 positive COVID-19 cases recorded and doctors already calling for a breather for exhausted frontliners, Senator Richard J. Gordon, chairman and CEO of the Philippine Red Cross advised taking into consideration the plight of the medical frontliners in deciding about the imposition of quarantine levels.

Gordon pointed out that the country's healthcare system is close to being overwhelmed and most of the isolation facilities are also full.

"Dapat pag-aralang mabuti 'yan (retaining GCQ status) dahil ang mga frontliners natin pagod na pagod na, marami ng nagkakasakit sa kanila. Sa Red Cross, 'yung mga medtechs namin, naco-COVID na rin... Dapat pag-aralan lahat 'yung mga suggestion nila, some are very meritorious, na dapat ipahinga muna 'yung mga doctor...pati isolation facilities natin ngayon, punung-puno, 'yun ang problema. It should be considered as far as I'm concerned," he said in an interview.

The senator reiterated the need for a master plan in the fight against the Coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID pandemic, particularly on the protection of medical frontliners.

"Kasi certainly, 'yung mga doctors, nurses, frontliners, dapat magkaroon tayo ng talagang plano para hindi lahat sabay-sabay na sasabak. Gaya ng, alam ko, 'yung iba hindi nagtatrabaho ng one week tapos pumapasok ulit ng three weeks, o kaya fourteen days sila papasok tapos fourteen days hindi papasok. To me life is more important at mahirap na mawalan tayo ng mga doctor. Consider na muna at pag-aralang mabuti," he said.

The Philippine College of Physicians urged the government to again place Metro Manila under an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), even just for two weeks, to give health workers a time to recuperate from exhaustion due to the non-stop admission of COVID-19 patients in hospitals.

The group's Vice President Dr. Maricar Limpin said they are asking for a breather for exhausted medical frontliners, pointing out that cases started to rise after the ECQ was relaxed into the modified community quarantine. She added that aside from physical exhaustion, many hospital workers are also experiencing depression.

President Rodrigo Duterte retained the general community quarantine (GCQ) over Metro Manila until August 15.

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