TACLOBAN CITY- Presidential Adviser to the Visayas Undersecretary Anthony Gerard Gonzales is urging governors in the Visayas to send medical personnel to the National Capital Region (NCR) to help the government address the surge of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that is now affecting medical staff of major hospitals in the nation’s capital.
Gonzales said that helping the NCR address its present situation is necessary as it affects the economy of the entire country.
Sending medical personnel would greatly help in addressing the current problem which does not only affect cities in Metro Manila but in its neighboring provinces as well, he added.
“We are also calling on the different provinces, yung mga governors na magpadala rin sila. I’m sure there are many nurses who do not have job at this time, maganda naman yung package at meron namang incentives ang ibibigay ang OPAV at Project Balik Buhay na P5,000 each every month for three months plus other benefit na ibibigay ng government,” Gonzales said.
His office is also calling for registered nurses to volunteer for the deployment at NCR. Those who will volunteer,  aside from receiving P5,000 cash incentives every month, they will also be provide with  transportation, accommodation, and financial package that amount to around P33,000.
On Wednesday (April 7), 16 medical health workers from the region, composed of 15 nurses and one doctor, travelled to NCR where they are to be assigned at the Lung Center of the Philippines in Quezon City.
They are expected to stay there for at least two months, depending on the situation at NCR.
DOH8 Acting Regional Director Exuperia Sabalberino, DOH-8 acting regional director, said that they may still send another batch of health workers if there is a need.
In an interview with Southern Leyte Governor Damian Mercado, he said that the province is willing to send health workers since they have list of applicants who are looking for job at the hospital run by the provincial government.
Leyte Governor Leopoldo Dominico Petilla, on his part, said that he already received such request from Gonzales but he still needs to have a meeting with the provincial health office to determine their response because Covid-19 is not the only health problem that the province is attending.
Metro Manila along with its neighboring provinces of Rizal, Laguna, Bulacan, Cavite are placed by the Inter-Agency Task Force under what they call NCR Plus bubble which are experiencing a spike of COVID-19 cases.