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ROUGH CUTS | CoViD spike: We too, are to blame

tuesday issue august 11, 2020



These are figures posted on Facebook with stationery bearing the logo of the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC).
The numbers represent the breakdown of total cases of persons in Davao City recorded to have been infected with the deadly Corona Virus Disease (CoViD 19) and admitted at the government hospital as of last Sunday, August 9, 2020.
Eleven districts have been identified and Poblacion tops in the list with 267 cases. Talomo district comes next with a total of 202 cases followed by Buhangin district with 180 infected individuals. After Buhangin the district of Agdao registered 151 infections, then Bunawan with 49, Tugbok district with 39, Toril with 36.
Calinan district has 22 persons recorded to have contacted the CoViD virus, Paquibato 7, Baguio district with 5, and Marilog with only 2.
All in all, the CoViD 19-afflicted persons admitted at the SPMC with registered addresses from Davao City as of last Sunday totaled 960. There were however 73 other CoViD patients who came from other areas in the Davao Region.
The Facebook post though, did not include the number of patients who died because of the infection. But based on previous reports we can assume that the local medical front liners have been able to handle the health emergency quite well resulting to a minimal number of persons who died of CoViD infection.
The city’s excellent record in fighting the pandemic can be attributed to the no-nonsense implementation of the various health protocols by the local officials led by lady mayor Inday Sara Duterte-Carpio.
We have also observed in the report that the figures seem to validate the theory that the more congested the area is, the bigger the chances of faster transmission of the deadly virus.
So it is not anymore surprising if districts like Marilog, Baguio, and Paquibato where the population is sparse, had the smallest number of CoViD victims.
On the contrary, Poblacion, Talomo, Buhangin, and Agdao districts – all hosts to a huge number of people living in houses so closed to each other — tallied the most number of afflicted individuals.
Well, the figures may not be pleasing to hear or see. But definitely, these may be useful to government planners especially in the aspect of making preventive measures for any emergency situation whether in identical magnitude as that of the CoViD 19 pandemic or lesser.
In other words, the number of victims of the prevailing health emergency can be a useful lesson to our government planners as well as to the people who stand to be most affected when such a situation comes.
Starting on Saturday, August 15, wearing of face shield by people taking public utility transportation will already be mandatory.
In other words, anyone who is authorized to go out of his/her residence by virtue of the existing quarantine category in his/her community, or by exemption granted by the authorities, local or national, MUST wear face shield. And this order is in addition to the existing mandate for everyone to wear face mask wherever they are.
When the mandatory wearing of face shield was announced it was immediately met with howls of protest. Many of those who expressed their resentment claimed that the government seems vent on adding more to their sufferings.
According to those who complained against the order they are already denied their means of living by having them isolated in their houses or limiting their movement. Now they claim, they will again, be made to fork money from their long empty pockets.
They argued that with the mandatory wearing of face shields they will have to sacrifice a meal or two, or even more, for their family just to be able to buy the face shield.
Somehow, we could not help but agree to the reasons of their protestation. The cost of face shields will no doubt be shooting up already by this time. And the many opportunists among us Filipinos are quick to take advantage of the situation.
In fact, last Sunday we were already hearing news reports of vanishing stocks of face shields after some greedy individuals bought in bulk whatever available stocks there were from suppliers. Then we heard that the costs of face shields have gone double the price prior to the announcement of the mandatory wearing.
Yes, the soaring prices of face shields may not affect the more fortunate among us, especially those who have their own private rides. But how many are these people compared to the number of those taking public transportation; those who have to risk going out to look for money to buy food?
In this battle against the unseen deadly enemy we have our front line warriors who are themselves also complaining of their condition in the field. They too are tired and some are already sick.
Yet again, in every mode of defense adopted by the government against the pandemic, it is the general public, the very people sought to be protected from the enemy, are the ones suffering the most.
But were it not that proper wearing of face mask, social distancing and sanitizing one’s self the reasons why some two months back the CoViD 19 infection curve flattened? Was not the seeming flattening of the curve the reason why the government down-graded the country’s quarantine levels?
If these protocols were immediately abandoned after the quarantine category down-grading, then it is not just the government that is to blame. Largely, we the people as well, due to our reckless return to our undesirable habit of complacency.

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