AFTER the launch of the new Malasakit Center, Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go advised Filipinos not to panic and instead, cooperate with the government in its efforts to address the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation through stronger and more proactive measures to prevent the further spread of the virus.
“Dapat laging handa tayo. Dapat ang gobyerno one step ahead. Maging proactive tayo. Dapat handa tayo kung sakaling kumalat iyang COVID,” Go emphasized as he urged officials to take stronger and more proactive measures to fight the spread of the virus.
He also advised those who may be experiencing flu-like symptoms to go to the nearest hospital and consult doctors to get proper medical attention and prevent the further spread of the disease. He added that they may also seek assistance from the Malasakit Centers for their hospital bills.
“It was announced by the Department of Health (DoH) na merong local case ng COVID-19,” Go said adding, “Huwag tayo mag-panic. Let’s move forward and be one step ahead always. Magtulungan tayo. ‘Wag mag-spread ng fake news. Sundin natin ang mga advisories mula sa ating health officials.”
Go also said that if necessary, he will recommend to President Rodrigo Duterte to form a crisis committee to empower the DoH and local government units to combat the further spread of the disease.
“Ayaw natin itong kumalat pa. If needed, I will recommend to the President na mag-form ng crisis committee to empower the DoH and LGUs para mas lalong mabantayan ang pagkalat ng coronavirus,” he said.
Go also said he is helping health officials as a legislator and chair of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography in overcoming this situation.
“I am sure ginagawa ng health officials ang kanilang trabaho... I am asking health officials to update the public from time to time. Sa publiko, sundin natin ang mga precautionary measures, tulad ng paghugas ng kamay, pagsuot ng face mask kung may sakit na nakakahawa, at mag-self-quarantine kung kailangan,” Go added.
Senator Go attended on Friday the opening of three more Malasakit Center in Cebu. The 69th Malasakit Center launched in Talisay District Hospital, a DoH-operated hospital in Bgy. San Isidro, Talisay, Cebu.
Intended to streamline the provision of government medical and financial assistances, a Malasakit Center is a one-stop shop for indigent and financially incapacitated patients where relevant government agencies with assistance programs are housed under one roof.
The Senator is the main author of the Malasakit Center Act of 2019, which mandates the establishment of Malasakit Centers in all 73 DoH-run hospitals in the country and at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH). The law was signed by the President in December of last year.
Sen. Go also witness the opening of the 70th Malasakit Center at the Saint Anthony Mother and Child Hospital (SAMCH) at Barangay Basak San Nicolas and distribute assistances to victims of a recent fire.
The victims of the fire in nearby Sitio Ipil on March 5 also attended the opening of the Malasakit Center. The Senator distributed financial and relief assistance to them.
The 429 fire victims, belonging to 116 families residing in 81 houses, also received financial and livelihood assistances from the DSWD, livelihood assistance from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and housing materials assistance from the National Housing Authority (NHA).
He then proceeded to Lapu-Lapu City to witness the opening of the 71st Malasakit Center at the Lapu-Lapu City District Hospital.
Go said that more Malasakit Centers are slated to be opened in Cebu Province. “Mayroon pa tayong plano pa na apat na lugar—sa Bogo, Carcar, Balamban at Danao. ‘Yan ang mga future plans natin, pero sa ngayon, ang inyong probinsya na mga Bisaya ay marami nang Malasakit Center.”