MANILA – Health Secretary Francisco Duque III reminded medical center chiefs to regularly and clearly inform their teams on actions taken to address operational issues, proactively seek concerns and grievances from their staff that they may be immediately addressed, and immediately report such concerns through the appropriate channels.
This, as Duque joined the Field Implementation and Coordination Team emergency meeting with National Capital Region (NCR) medical center chiefs in a video conference meeting on Easter Sunday at the East Avenue Medical Center (EAMC).
Duque appealed to medical center chiefs and health care workers to immediately report concerns directly to the DOH and the public to be more circumspect in posting information that unduly causes panic.
“Our lines have always been open, more so in this time of great challenge. Let us work together. Your information could help us avert a crisis,” Duque said.
Duque earlier inspected EAMC and met with its management amid reports of cadavers piling-up in the hospital morgue.
The EAMC management team reported that on Saturday morning, it has met with various government agencies to address the concern.
Following this, arrangements with local government units, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, and other stakeholders have been made for the speedy transport and cremation/burial of cadavers, to contain any risk these may pose.
The Quezon City Council was tasked to manage any unclaimed bodies and shoulder the cost of cremation if funding from next of kin is unavailable.
EAMC said it has long been looking for a mobile freezer to accommodate the bodies to be claimed, be it a coronavirus case or not.
Additional body bags were received by EAMC Hospital Director, Dr. Alfonso Nuñez on Sunday morning.
Duque, meanwhile, acknowledged the challenges faced by health facilities at the front lines of the Covid-19 response and the creative and innovative ways by which they have addressed these, reassuring medical center chiefs of the DOH central office’s continued support and assistance.
“On behalf of the Department, we are grateful for the unparalleled service and your continued support to the Filipino people in these troubling times. We salute your heroism,” Duque said.
Duque also conveyed how inspired he was by the sense of community in health facilities whose members, caring deeply about the safety and well-being of their colleagues, contribute to efforts such as providing more personal protective equipment and supplies, looking for needed suppliers and service providers, and reaching out to authorities to relay their concerns.
“This truly reflects the ‘bayanihan’ spirit necessary to win the fight against Covid-19. However, to become more agile and more responsive, we have to be organized. We need to consolidate and avoid duplication of our efforts,” he said. (PR)