Doctors Right at the Doorsteps

WORTH-emulating. That’s the words that could best describe the initiative made by the city of Valenzuela in taking care of its poor and frail senior citizens who do not have now to leave their homes because local doctors will be right at their doorsteps to attend to their medical needs.

Known for having a lot of firsts in carrying out programs for his constituents, Mayor Win Gatchalian’s latest, the “Dalaw ni Dok kay Lolo at Lola” project could really raise one’s spirits and even persuade local government executives to follow suit that’s if they have so much to care for their underprivileged elderly who try but could not seek medical attention elsewhere because of illness or disability.

Working in tandem with equally-workaholic younger brod, Rep. Rex Gatchalian, Win says several poor senior residents have been the immediate beneficiaries of the program with the local health office as leading implementing agency in which at least a physician and a nurse have been dedicated to regularly visit and provide check-ups, among others, doctors would normally do at a clinic to those medically-indigent elderly especially those living in low-lying or flooded areas even during dry season.

“This is only one way of returning to our constituents what’s due for them and I believe the poor and elderly residents should be given extra-attention that they truly deserve,” says the youthful mayor who’s been now pre-occupied in promoting the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) through the League of Cities of the Philippines of which he’s the vice president for the national capital region.

Public information officer Ahna Mejia says the house-to-house method to reach to the city’s ailing elderly is the mayor’s commitment  to the national government’s policy “to establish program beneficial to the senior citizens, their families and the community that they serve.” Moreover, the mayor is apparently influenced by a 2001 study published by the British Medical Journal that revealed “home visiting as an effective approach in reducing risks of mortality among the elderly, especially the frail seniors.”

Navotas’ massive drive vs dengue

Not contented with the fogging operations which have been discouraged anyway by health authorities for addressing the deadly dengue virus, the Navotas government has tapped the local environment and natural resources and engineering offices to conduct massive dredging operation on major creeks and waterways in a determined bid to destroy and clear all possible breeding grounds for the dengue-carrying mosquitoes.

Lito Serrano, the city chief engineer, says it would drastically reduce the volume of garbage and improve flood control system to maintain cleanliness and destroy all possible breeding places of mosquitoes that may bring dengue now at the onset of rainy season with the priority given to low-lying areas including Barangays Tanza, Tangos, Daanghari, Bagumbayan and North Bay Boulevard South.

Mayor John Rey Tiangco says: ““As the saying goes, prevention is more important than cure.  This campaign serves as eye-opener to those who are still unaware of the ill effects of pests and unclean environment.  I hope my fellow Navoteños will value the importance of cleanliness as potent weapon to fight all kinds of diseases.”

MMDA’s absurd ‘attack’

MMDA chief Francis Tolentino seems to be already overacting when he plans to “attack” bars, restaurants and similar establishments that sell liquors to vehicle owners.

Apparently overwhelmed by his boss, PNoy’s “straight path,” Tolentino wants his agency to have “some kind of control” over these businesses which have been, partly if not mainly, contributing to the government coffers just to boost its anti-drunk driving campaign. He wants to attack these establishments for, according to him, being the source of alcoholic drinks that make drivers drunk.

“That’s really absurd,” a mediaman, a lawyer and police officer chorused. They say if the brainy MMDA chief is hell-bent to go after the source, he should have stopped the makers of liquors and beer as well. He could use all his agency’s logistics and resources to stop the San Miguel Beer brewery, Lucio Tan’s Asia Brewery and other wine distillers or distributors in the country. There, if he succeeds his anti-drunk driving drive will surely succeed too.

Where in this world would these bars and ‘restos’ limit the number of drinks they serve to customers whether they’re driving or not? Drinkers could limit their alcohol intake through self-regulation and if they exceed that’s the time the concerned authorities should step in.
Tolentino’s MMDA should focus on matters that really are of interest to the metropolis as a whole instead of messing with these businesses as there are more proper government agencies that can deal with them. Arlie o. Calalo


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