MANILA – The health cluster of the House of Representatives’ Defeat COVID-19 Committee (DCC) on Wednesday held its technical working group (TWG) meeting to discuss solutions to improve the government’s capacity in containing the spread and impact of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

The virtual meeting of the DCC health cluster, chaired by Representatives Angelina Tan and Janette Garin, was attended by the Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III, Health Undersecretary Lilibeth David, PhilHealth president and CEO Ricardo Morales, and other health experts.

In his opening remarks, Majority Leader Martin Romualdez said the country recorded the highest number of Covid-19 cases in the Asean region as of Wednesday, stressing that the government must strengthen its efforts to contain the pandemic.

“In the face of adversity, we have no choice but to remain steadfast, resolute, and optimistic as we work tirelessly in the service of the Filipino people. We, your Representatives, are your eyes and ears on the ground, and your voice on the national stage,” Romualdez said.

“Rest assured that the House of Representatives is working towards crafting a solution to help ensure the promotion of public health and safety, the delivery of basic goods and services, the upliftment of the economy, and the restoration of the livelihood of many of our countrymen,” he added.

Romualdez noted that the DCC’s economic cluster is working on a PHP370-billion stimulus-response package to flatten the recession curve and keep the country’s economy afloat.

“We intend to use these resources to improve our capacity in containing this novel coronavirus and in mitigating the ill effects it has brought to our daily life. With all your inputs today, I have no doubt that we can achieve this mission and craft a better plan to address the remaining challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic,” he added.

Duque, meanwhile, said that while the last three months has been “difficult” for the DOH, the fight against the disease must still go on.

“Marami po sa amin ang nagkasakit na, na-quarantine … pero patuloy na lumalaban para sa kalusugan ng Pilipino (A lot of us have already gotten sick, have been quarantined… but we are still fighting for the health of Filipinos),” Duque said.

“The fight against Covid-19 is not a fight of one man or agency, but the fight of all Filipinos,” he added.

As of Wednesday, the Philippines has 5,453 confirmed Covid-19 cases, with 349 fatalities and 353 recoveries. (PNA)

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