THE news last week: An ostrich ran for its freedom in a QC village, a pig ran loose on the highway in Cebu, so did a pig in Iloilo.
Meanwhile, crocodiles in a health insurance company are running away with P15 billion of our hard-earned money. Pigs in the House are lying in millions intended for better use. We steal as one.
Update on the ostrich: it died reportedly due to stress. Police version: nanlaban kasi. Netizens and activists' version: We are ostriches.
At the start of the pandemic, I was worried that I hadn't paid my PhilHealth insurance, worried that my family may need that in the worst case scenario.
Five months into the pandemic, I still hadn't paid my PhilHealth, and the PhilHealth money is siphoned to its executive's pockets, and many people confined due to Covid-19 are in need of that money, and that's the worst-case scenario.
Two of this health insurance company's top officials are begging off from facing a congressional probe, saying they are sick. A former president calls this: the wheelchair defense. We call it: wheeling and dealing.
Lawmakers though may have offered a remedy for our disappeared PhilHealth funds. The Bayanihan 2 includes P10 billion for Covid-19 insurance, P20 billion for cash for work program, P10.5 billion for hiring of more health care workers and more funds for PPE for health workers.
Maybe the public outcry from the health frontliners for timeout helped push for this to happen. But I heard that no one has applied for additional staff here at the state hospitals in Davao. There are no takers. It seems health workers want to see a light in the end of this dark tunnel we are going through in this pandemic.
The Second Opinion web forum of doctors in community and public health sectors point out a deeper problem: if the quarantine is still being managed by a military mind-set rather than medical experts, we will see no end to the rise of cases, and task force setting quarantines that shift letters but no help is given to the people.
We already the highest number of cases in Southeast Asia, the longest lockdown in the world, and the biggest animal farm.
Unless changes happen in our health care response, we will tire of late night press briefings from government that offer jokes that are not funny, or wishes that a cure will come up like magic before Christmas, which is scientifically not possible. We might as well bury our head in the soil like what ostriches do.
August 11, 2020
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