BI made a wise move; kudos to frontliners and retired docs

MY heart bleeds for those from the health sector who have either passed away or are now being monitored for the possibility of having contracted the novel coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID 19.

Ditto with other frontline government workers like the two policemen assigned in Manila who were reportedly confirmed to have been infected by the deadly virus.

These instances should make us all the more thankful to the doctors and nurses and their staff,  policemen, soldiers and the skeletal force of various national and local government units and agencies as well as employees of those categorized as essential services like drugstores, food establishments and supermarkets,  colleagues in the media, our editors and production staff and volunteers who help in repacking food items as well in distributing them.

And of course, our national and local government officials and employes who now have to be up and about 24/7 (sana all) if they are part of an office that ned to be operational  amid the crisis.

Let us include them in our prayers that they be given constant strength of body and mind and that they stay safe so they can help put an end to the spread of the coronavirus which continues to claim more lives here and abroad.

Alongside this, that our countrymen may take seriously what the enhanced community quarantine, curfew and social distancing are really for and for them to be equipped with ample intelligence and comprehension to understand and heed these fully. 

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With workers from the health sector overwhelmed and running short while some even get infected or quarantined, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) came up with a bright move to help its frontline officers at the airports avoid getting infected by COVID-19, by  mobilizing its personnel with medical backgrounds.

BI spokesperson Dana Sandoval said that through a directive, the BI has assigned 18 immigration officers, all of whom are registered/licensed nurses, to constitute an ad hoc medical team that will spearhead the bureau’s fight against COVID-19 at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). The team members were directed to report to the BI medical section, headed by Dr. Marites Ambray, for instructions and told to be ready to respond to any situation requiring medical attention that may occur while they are on duty.

“Our immigration officers, like our health workers, are also in the frontlines of our campaign against the COVID-19.  It is only proper that they be protected against this virus and extended medical attention should they need it,” said Sandoval.

BI Port Operations Division Chief Grifton Medina disclosed that members of the medical team will be deployed and assigned to their respective shifts at the NAIA to serve the medical needs of their fellow officers manning the immigration counters of the airport.

“Fortunately, we have in our ranks several immigration officers who have worked as nurses and have extensive medical experience before they joined the bureau. We are now tapping their knowledge and expertise in the fight against COVID-19,” Medina said, adding that the medical team is directed  not to allow any BI officers exhibiting flu-like symptoms to report for duty.

BI’s frontline officers who may have flu-like symptoms are directed to skip work and voluntary go on 14-day self-quarantine to protect not only themselves but also their fellow officers.

Maybe other government agencies can also tap those with medical backgrounds to help augment the undermanned hospitals.  Who knows, maybe some of them would be willing to help and fulfill a noble deed.

Why, as I saw early this morning in a news report, even retired doctors are organizing to find a way to help and lend their expertise in these trying times. Kudos to them, considering that their lot is the most vulnerable to getting the virus. May God keep them safe too.

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Jokjok (from Joel Sevidal of Sampaloc, Manila)--- Teacher: Class, I want you to know that only Juan got 95 out of 100 during our exam./Juan: O, ha?Ano, kaya n`yo `yun? Uwi na kayo sa bukid n`yo. Tanim kayo kamote, kain ng bahaw!Mga bobo! Wahahaha!!!/Teacher: Tapos ka na ba, Juan?I would like to