Cavite doctor hailed as hero

A House leader expressed heartfelt gratitude to a doctor who joined others in sacrificing their lives to save patients and fight the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Cavite Rep. Elpidio Barzaga, chairman of the House Committee on Environment and Natural Resources, expressed deep sadness at the death of Dr. Ronaldo Mateo.

Mateo, a surgeon from Cavite and a graduate of UST College of Medicine, died last April 5.

“The province has lost a son to this pandemic. Ipinahahatid ng Pamahalaang Lungsod ang taimtim na pakikiramay sa kanyang mga kapamilya at kaibigan,” Barzaga said in a statement.

Barzaga said Mateo was one of the pioneer doctors at the Pagamutan ng Dasmariñas who had served as head of its surgery department until the time of his death.

“Ang kanyang katapangan sa pagtupad ng kanyang tungkulin bilang medical frontliner sa gitna ng kinakaharap na krisis ay hindi malilimutan kailanman,” he said.

In honor of the late doctor’s heroism and dedication to his sworn duty, Barzaga said the operating room complex of the city hospital will be named after the late surgeon and will now be called the “Dr. Ronaldo Mateo Operating Room Complex.”

The lawmaker joined the whole country in giving tribute to all medical frontliners who are risking their lives in the war against the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We feel your pain. We’ve lost one of our own in this battle. I salute all our frontliners for their bravery and sacrifice. They are putting their lives on the line to save the lives of others,” Barzaga said.

Just last Tuesday, the Makati Medical Center announced the death of Dr. Roberto “Bobby” Anastacio, a cardiovascular medicine specialist who was also in the frontline against COVID-19.

Anastacio was the attending cardiologist when Barzaga underwent quintuple heart bypass at the MMC 20 years ago.