The Department of Health (DOH) confirmed that 252 health workers have tested positive for COVID-19, as shown in its latest data. Of this number, 152 or 65% are doctors, while 63% or 25% are nurses.
Twelve of these medical frontliners already died from the virus.
This is the first time that the DOH has released data regarding the number of health workers infected.
Recently, the agency included medical staff with COVID-19 symptoms in the list of people at high risk who should be tested.
This hashtag trended back when President Rodrigo Duterte implemented the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), which immediately caught the attention of the people on the Internet.
They said that police and military power should be the least in the government’s priority as we are battling a virus. Some said that a gun cannot protect those who are working tirelessly in our frontlines helping those who are already infected.
Addressing the lack of personal protective equipment (PPEs) is also what the people wanted for medical workers as they are the people who are highly at risk of getting the virus.
Instead, Duterte ordered military and policemen to roam around every entry and exit point of Metro Manila to ensure that everyone stays at home, while all of our medical health workers are combatting war with no type of protection in your hands.
Duterte even got flak of hate from the netizens when he said in a televised address that dying as a frontline during the COVID-19 crisis is an honor for the country.
It was seen as an insensitive remark as these health workers died because they didn’t get the utmost attention and protection from the government whose primary concern should be its people.
Looking back at the data from DOH, is this the result of not prioritizing the health of our medical frontliners? Can we describe that the use of police and military force during the crisis a misplaced effort?