WITH millions expected to troop to the City of Manila, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) is set to mobilize hundreds of its personnel in a bid to ensure readiness to attend to the medical needs of devotees attending the feast of the Black Nazarene.
In a statement, PRC Chairman Richard Gordon said they are set to mobilize their personnel, as well as assets and logistics from January 7 to 10 for the Nazareno 2024 activities.
"Every religious mass event in our country is important to us, and the safety of every Filipino, who will attend these events is our top priority," said Gordon.
"The resumption of the traditional Traslacion this year will bring millions of Filipinos together. We will mobilize our volunteers from different chapters to accommodate the medical needs of devotees," he added.
Gordon said the PRC is dispatching more than 1,000 trained first aiders, Emergency Response Unit (ERU) personnel, and Emergency Medical Teams to man the 10 first aid stations and welfare desks along the procession route.
Six teams of foot patrollers will also serve as mobile first-aiders during the festivities centered at the Quiapo Church and the Quirino Grandstand.
The PRC said it will also set up an Emergency Field Hospital (EFH) near Kartilya ng Katipunan to augment the EFHs of the Department of Health and the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office.
Also to be deployed are 17 ambulance units, one fire truck, two rescue boats, and one amphibian, which will be positioned in strategic areas starting Sunday, January 7.
In 2023, the PRC provided medical care to over 800 devotees who attended the 2023 edition of the Black Nazarene feast.
On January 9, the procession of the iconic Black Nazarene image is set to resume after being mothballed for three years due to the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic. (HDT/SunStar Philippines)