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Go urges DOH to hasten tracking of airline passengers for nCoV

February 05, 2020 - Wednesday 6:02 PM by MDM

Article Banner Image Senator Christopher Lawrence Go speaks to reporters at the Senate.Contributed photo

Senate Committee on Health Chair and Senator Christopher Lawrence Go has urged the Department of Health (DOH) to hasten the procedures in tracking the airline passengers who might have had contact with the tourists who tested positive for 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) infection.

“’Yan dapat hanapin talaga nila. Dapat nila panagutan ‘yan... Dapat nilang i-account. Sabi naman ng taga-PAL (Philippine Airlines) sa akin kanina, binigay raw nila ang mga pangalan,” Go told reporters in an interview after the Senate public hearing on the 2019 nCoV.

He urged the DOH to coordinate with other government agencies.

“Gamitin niyo ang mga pulis. Gamitin natin ang immigration officials. Kaya ‘yan. If there’s a will, there’s a way. May paraan talaga. Gawin niyo na may dedikasyon ang inyong trabaho,” he said.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III admitted during the committee hearing that the DOH has so far contacted only 17 percent or 331 individuals out of the total number of passengers who had been in the same flight as the patients.

The country’s only two positive cases of 2019-nCoV ARD involved two Chinese nationals from Wuhan City, China. They arrived in the Philippines on January 21 and visited the cities of Cebu and Dumaguete. One of them died on February 1.

Go siad he agrees with Duque’s statement that the coordination between government agencies should be improved.

“Dapat. Trabaho nila ‘yan. Dapat ayusin ninyo ‘yung sistema ninyo, coordination, kaya nga meron kayong Inter-Agency Task Force para pag-usapan at gumawa kayo ng solusyon sa bawat problemang darating sa atin,” he said.

He also said he is open to calling another public hearing on the 2019 nCov ARD if necessary.

Overall, however, Go said he is thankful to the key officials who attended the hearing and informed the public on the precautionary measures already in place to protect Filipinos.

“Maraming katanungan ang publiko na nasagot naman po ng ating mga resource persons, at salamat din po sa lahat ng nag-attend na cabinet members. Mula sa kanilang mga bunganga talaga ang mga sagot,” he said.

“’Yun po ang gustong marinig ng publiko, maliwanagan ‘yung mga issue, maliwanagan ‘yung pangamba. Ngayon panahon na po na magtulungan na po tayo,” he added.