Briones: I’m not impressed

On the Go

THE chief implementer of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Infectious Diseases who was recently here in Cebu allegedly praised the Cebu City Quarantine Center when he visited the facility at Block 27 in the North Reclamation Area.

Of course, we only have Mayor Edgardo Labella’s word for it, hence my use of “allegedly.”

According to the mayor, Secretary Carlito Galvez said the facility is not found in Manila and that impressed him.


You know, Galvez could have easily twitted his reaction or posted it on his Facebook page or even announced it during a virtual press conference. But he didn’t. Or maybe he did and I just missed it.

But such a revelation slipping under the radar would be hard to fathom, especially nowadays, which is probably why Labella had to point it out.

Obviously, the mayor is a dependable source since he accompanied the secretary during the latter’s visit to the quarantine center. But it would have been nicer to actually hear Galvez say it instead of getting the information from a secondhand source.

So what was it that captured Galvez’s admiration? According to the post on the Facebook page of the Cebu City Public Information Office (PIO), the secretary was particularly impressed “by the equipment in the quarantine facility, especially with the checking of the patient’s vital signs that does not require physical contact between the nurse or doctor and the patient.”

My, my, the technological wonders of the 21st century. Pray tell me, what thingamajig are they referring to?

Cebu City Medical Center administrator Yvonne Feliciano said the negative pressure quarantine facility – hmm, sounds impressive already – is equipped with hospital beds, a portable X-ray, intubation set, standby oxygen and a small laboratory, among others.

Yeah? So what else? What about the gadget that takes vital signs without the need for physical contact?

I mean, it impressed an official from Manila, according to the PIO post, so why did Feliciano not mention it?

Anyway, I’m sure the mayor meant well when he divulged what Galvez told him during the latter’s visit, but did he have the secretary’s permission to share it with the public?

The secretary could have been making an off-hand remark, you know, to kill time. Because inspecting a facility that houses patients infected with a disease that could potentially be deadly is so exciting. Or maybe Galvez was just making small talk. Or being polite to his host.

Either way, he probably had no idea that what he said during their conversation would make news headlines.

I don’t mean to be skeptical.

But Cebu City already has the highest number of coronavirus disease 2019 cases nationwide. Many people are without jobs. Many more rely on government assistance to survive.

And I’m supposed to pat the City on the back because the mayor said an official from Manila was “impressed” with the facility.

My, my, the technological wonders of the 21st century. Pray tell me, what thingamajig are they referring to?


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