AS THE City Government immediately cancelled classes and other school-related activities to prevent the further spread of Covid-19, some colleges and universities in Davao City made the initiative of helping frontliners and fellow Dabawenyos during this time of distress.
These schools made use of their laboratories to come up with equipment and research studies relevant and helpful for the fight against Covid-19.
As medical equipment such as face shields were becoming scarce, the University of Southeastern Philippines fabricated aerosol boxes and face shields through their Fabrication Laboratory. The face shields were distributed to the frontliners of the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC), the only hospital in Davao City that accepts Covid-positive patients. The university turned over 25 fabricated face shields to SPMC and 10 face shields to the Davao Regional Medical Center (DRMC) in Tagum City.
Aside from these big hospitals, they also donated to health facilities in Lupon, Asuncion, Kapalong, and Pantukan.
“We heard news that there was depletion of resources of PPE, which are essential sa mga frontliners especially medical frontliners kaya USEP initiated to help them,” Alma Mae Salinas, USEP Dean of College of Technology said.
In the same way, the University of Immaculate Conception also decided to make use of their remaining stocks of absolute alcohol (ACS/ISO) to make 80 percent ethyl alcohol hand sanitizers strictly following the World Health Organization (WHO) standards. In a statement, the College of Pharmacy and Chemistry said they immediately donated the hand sanitizers to the SPMC frontliners.
Because of limited supply of absolute alcohol, UIC called out to willing private individuals, companies, and warehouses who still have spare absolute alcohol to bring their stocks to UIC College of Pharmacy and Chemistry. The university will be more than willing to formulate ethyl alcohol hand sanitizers for them to be donated for frontliners as well.
About 500 pieces of face shields, 100 protective suits, and 100 boxes of gloves were donated by Malayan Colleges of Mindanao (MCM) to the ICU cluster of SPMC in the first week of April. As the number of suspected and confirmed positive cases of Covid-19 increases, the sanitary equipment for medical frontliners become all the more in-demand.
The MCM community also gathered online Get-Well-Soon cards which were then sent to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, who in turn, print these cards and place them on patient’s breakfast trays.
This spirit of encouragement is hoped to give the patients the strength they need in this trying time.
Knowing that having only one testing center in the entire region slows down the process of detection, the University of the Philippines Mindanao has come up with a diagnostic program that will provide free testing in the region. It is targeted to supplement the testing currently being done in SPMC.
The program includes the establishment of a P15-million biosafety molecular lab attached to a hospital. It targets to run about 110 tests per day. In the latest interview with Philippine Genome Center Mindanao Director Dr. Lyre Anni Murao, she said the Davao Regional Medical Center (DRMC) Tagum City has finally agreed to house the diagnostic lab.
At present, they are on the construction planning stages and the manpower training of the medical practitioners.
If anything, the pandemic only shows how we function as one community for one goal.