Senator calls for vigilance, compassion amid new variant

Cecille Suerte Felipe (The Philippine Star) - May 14, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Bong Go appealed to all Filipinos to remain vigilant, cooperate with authorities and show compassion for one another after the Department of Health reported two cases of the B1617 coronavirus variant first detected in India.

“That is worrying. This is the variant of concern, this Indian variant because we know what is happening to them that their health care system has almost collapsed,” Go said during the launching of the 110th Malasakit Center at the Cotabato Provincial Hospital in Kidapawan City, North Cotabato.

“There are many critical cases, many severe cases. That’s what we don’t want to happen – hospitals are filling up. That is why we need the discipline and cooperation of every Filipino here,” he added.

Go appealed for Filipinos not to be complacent – especially those in areas classified under general community quarantine and modified general community quarantine, the most lax among the quarantine categories – and to remain vigilant as the threat of COVID-19, especially its new variants, continues to exist.

He also urged them to continue supporting the government and put their trust in the vaccines as it is integral in attaining herd immunity in communities and eventually restoring normalcy.

“Don’t be afraid of the vaccine, trust the vaccine. The vaccine is the key or solution so that we can gradually return to our normal life,” Go advised, citing the situation in India as a cautionary tale.

The senator also urged authorities to strengthen the implementation of health protocols, border control measures, and disease surveillance to further curb the spread of COVID-19.

“We don’t know who is asymptomatic, so we have to tighten our health protocols, we have to tighten our border controls, and we have to intensify this disease surveillance,” he reiterated.

He reassured the public that the government would continue to balance the protection of health while promoting the economy.

“The life of every Filipino is important to me. The money, we will earn that. But the money we earn cannot buy life. A lost life is a life lost forever,” Go said.

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