todays top stories

NBI, other gov't agencies seize P1.8 Million worth of thermal scanners 

March 24, 2020

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY - The National Bureau of Investigation in region 10, in coordination with the Food and Drugs Administration, Department of Trade and the City Regulatory and Complaint Board raided a medical supply store Tuesday aftenoon in Barangay Gusa, this city. The raid resulted to the confiscation of 203 units of portable thermal scanners by the joint operatives and regulatory units of the government, amounting to, more or less, P1.8 Million. Tonette Melgo, FDA representative told the media that the store owner, Lorna Chiong, failed to show proofs she was a legitimate seller of thermal scanners.  The owner was also urged to comply from authorities vital papers that would support his business such as license to operate, certificate of products and receipt from the supplier. It was learned that the raid was conducted by a joint team of NBI-10 and government agencies after receiving reports that unscrupulous persons are selling alleged 'fake thermal scanners' online. The seizure of thermal scanners was based on an FDA Advisory No. 2020-434 issued on March 20, 2020, by the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA). FDA Representative Melgo said Rolando Enrique Domingo, MD, director general of FDA issued the said advisory after their office received reports of rampant online selling of the InfraRed Thermometer for Medical Use in different online platforms. She said these online sellers are found operating in violation of the existing FDA guidelines on selling the units.  

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Hospital Director in Philippines dies of covid-19 infection

March 24, 2020

METRO MANILA - A top-ranking official of the Philippine Heart Center (PHC) has confirmed the other day the death of a hospital director due to the deadly attack of coronavirus infections.  Dr Raul Jara, Hospital Director of the Philippine Heart Center (PHC) died of multiple complications of kidney and cardiac arrest, it was learned. PHC Executive Director Joel Abanilla said Jara's death was a result of complications and old age, plus Jara was also infected by the deadly coronavirus disease. In a related news, it was also learned that there were already four doctors who have sacrificed their lives as frontliners against the deadly infection of coronavirus. Those doctors who last served the government as frontliners in their continued fight against the disease which originated in Wuhan, China, include Cardiologist Israel Bactol at the Philippine Heart Center; Oncologist Rose Pulido of San Juan de Dios Hospital, and Anesthesiologist Gregorio Macasaet III of the Manila Doctors Hospital. Meanwhile, Representative Rufus Rodriguez of Cagayan de Oro announced that those frontliners who died in the line of duty will received P1-Million from the government, aside from benefits and other remunerations. Rodriguez said this includes doctors, nurses, medical staff and other medical workers. "All those who have died in the line of duty as frontliners of the government in the fight against the deadly coronavirus disease. "Aside from that, all Filipinos who have lost their jobs will also receive P5000 to P8000 assistance from the government," the Cagayan de Oro Representative concluded.

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Coronavirus disease now claims over 13,000 lives around the world

March 23, 2020

DEADLY CORONAVIRUS DISEASE KILLS OVER 13,000 PEOPLE The deadly coronavirus onslaught continue to hit countries in Europe, with Spain almost double its fatality record to as high as 1,700, while Canada also announces its death toll to 19, or a total of 46 percent. John Hopkins recorded a total of increased cases from 1,099 to 1,328 cases for Canada. SENATOR MANNY "PACMAN" PACQUIAO ANNOUNCES THAT JACK MA, OWNER OF ALIBABA.COM AND A BILLIONAIRE BUSINESSMAN IN CHINA IS GOING TO DONATE 50,000 COVID-19 "TESTING KITS" AS PART OF HIS COMPANY'S CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY.   Around the world, there are now more than 13,000 people who have died of the deadly coronavirus disease, recently declared as pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). The good news is that 92,000 of the 304,500 people infected by the disease have now recovered, as China has already slowed down its death toll to a controllable level, as compared in the past weeks, where it really soared high.    Based on John Hopkins' tally yesterday (March 22) of the top countries severely hit by the deadly virus based on fatalities, we are posting here the top 10 countries as follows: 1. Italy - 53,578 confirmed cases - 5,476 deaths - 7,024 recovered 2. China - 81,397 confirmed cases - 3,265 deaths - 72,362 recovered 3. Spain - 28,603 confirmed cases - 1,756 deaths - 2,575 recovered 4. Iran - 21,638 confirmed cases -   1,685 deaths - 7,931 recovered 5. France - 14,485 confirmed cases - 562 deaths - 12 recovered 6. United States - 27,004 confirmed cases - 390 deaths - 176 recovered 7. United Kingdom - 5,071 confirmed cases - 234 deaths - 67 recovered 8. South Korea - 8,897 confirmed cases - 104 deaths - 2,909 recovered 9. Germany - 23,974 confirmed cases - 92 deaths - 266 recovered 10. Switzerland - 7,014 confirmed cases - 85 deaths - 131 recovered IN THE PHILIPPINES, CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY OSCAR S. MORENO ORDERS POLICEMEN TO ARREST CITIZENS WHO DENY AND BULLY PERSONS UNDER INVESTIGATIONS  (PUI) FOR POSSIBLE COVID-19 INFECTIONS IN THEIR COMMUNITIES.   RIOT IN BOGOTA PRISON KILLS 23 A riot in Bogota Prison, Columbia's capital resulted to the death of 23 prisoners and injuring 83 others, according to the Justice Minister Sunday (March 22).   The detainees, report said, have protested the poor sanitary conditions of the jail amid the outbreak of the deadly coronavirus elsewhere. The minister also reported that seven guards were also hurt in the riot, and two were also reported to be in critical condition. On Tuesday night March 24, the Andean country will be under a nationwide lockdown. So far, according to the report, there are now 231 people infected with the coronavirus disease -  and two have already died. FIRST CORONA DEATH IN AFGHANISTAN Afghanistan is one of the newest countries attacked by coronavirus disease. It has now confirmed its first death. Health ministry spokesperson, Wahidullah Mayar, reported that a 40-year-old man from North Balkh province was the first casualty of the virus. According to Wahidullah Mayar, Afghanistan has 34 confirmed cases. SINGAPORE ANNOUNCES 23 NEW CASES The Health Ministry of Singapore has reported 23 new cases of the deadly coronavirus disease, bringing the total infection to 455. Authorities in Singapore have decided to disallow short-term visitors to enter the country to effectively contain the spread of coronavirus disease. COPS IN KENYA CLASH WITH TRADERS Traders in Kenya resisted attempts of the police to shutdown a crowded market in Kisumu, purposely to control the spread of coronavirus disease. As a result, police authorities fired tear gas and also beat protesters who started the commotion, which sparked a riot after Kisumu County Governor Anyang' Nyong'o has ordered traders to shutdown their operations. Mohamed Hassan, one of the traders at Kibuye Market asked: "Some of the traders here are willing to take their chances with the coronavirus and die because we don't have any other choice. But why should we be beaten and attacked with tear gas?"                

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Hotels as temporary quarters for health workers mulled

March 23, 2020

AN official of the largest business organization in Cagayan de Oro City is proposing for hotel rooms to be used as temporary residences for health frontliners while they are on their two-week duty cycle.   It can be recalled that the Northern Mindanao Medical Center (NMMC) has implemented a two-week duty rotation to minimize the exposure of its workers caring persons under investigation (PUIs) of COVID-19 cases.   This prompted former Oro Chamber president Irene Floro to propose that hotels be used as temporary quarters for health workers.   This, even as Floro admitted that hotel occupancies in the city have tremendously dropped since Luzon implemented its community quarantine two weeks ago followed by Cebu and Cagayan de Oro City a week later.   Hotels together with other sectors constitute the more than 400 members of the Cagayan de Oro Chamber of Commerce and Industry Foundation, Inc.   "Kining ako suggestion lang. Maayo unta ma-utilize ang mga vacant rooms as ato social responsibility sa mga health workers," Floro said.   Floro revealed that some health frontliners are hesitant to go home in between breaks of their two-week shift cycle due to the risks of their work.   Those who are considered as health frontliners in this COVID-19 vigilance are NMMC personnel (doctors, nurses, medical technologists, etc.) in contact with PUIs, Department of Health (DOH) personnel doing contact tracing of these PUIs, city and municipal health office personnel doing thermal duties at ports of entry and checkpoints and barangay health workers supervising persons under monitoring (PUM).   As of March 23, there were ten PUIs confined at NMMC, the designated hub for infectious diseases in Northern Mindanao.

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Mambajao town in Camiguin under state of calamity due to Covid-19; Ardent spring resort, White island closed

March 23, 2020

CAMIGUIN--The town of Mambajao of this coastal province was declared under state of calamity due to Coronavirus 2019 (Covid-19), a report reaching the Mindanao Daily News online said.   Amid threat of Covid-19, the local government of Mambajao temporary closud the Ardent Hibok-HIbok Spring Resort and White Island for an indefinite period of time effective March 19. All activities, reservations, and bookings intended for but not limited to weddings, birthdays, photo shoots, or any forms of gathering to be celebrated in the area must be cancelled, the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) in Northern Mindanao reported. The report said that any form of entry to the Ardent Hibok-Hibok Spring Resort and the White Island within the effectivity of the order is considered illegal and will be reported to the authorities. The two tourist spots are situated in the western part of the municipality. Both are known for its pristine water that naturally flows in the island. With Marc Ian A. Salem of PIA 10

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Women’s labor market participation in PH low, says gender experts

March 23, 2020

“EVEN though women have already attained a lot in terms of education, it does not get translated into their labor market participation.”   This was according to Connie Dacuycuy, senior research fellow at the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) and volume editor of PIDS’ first book on gender and development titled Outside Looking In: Gendered Perspectives in Work and Education. The book was launched at Novotel in Cubao, Quezon City on March 9.   Dacuycuy noted that from 1990 to 2018, there had only been three to four percentage points increase in women’s labor force participation rate in the Philippines.   “From 1990 it was around 48 percent and in 2018 it was around 51 percent… that is really, really small and you get to think, what happens to their education?” Dacuycuy said, adding that this might be attributed to women doing housework.   “We are not saying here that doing housework is bad at all... There are good things that come with doing housework, like you get to spend more time with your children,” Dacuycuy explained, noting two findings in the book that said parental time has a positive impact on children’s schooling outcomes and that women contribute about 47 percent to the country’s labor income, including unpaid home production activities.   “Housework is important in nurturing not only the current generation, but also the future generations,” Dacuycuy said. However, because of this, she said the country may be “missing out on a lot of things”, adding that “women have skills, women have potential, women have knowledge that they can share.”   Similarly, Rex Varona, national project coordinator of International Labour Organization’s Safe and Fair Programme, urged stakeholders to also look at the relationship between migration and women’s labor market participation, citing Filipino women who work overseas.   “If you remove the nurturer in the house, who will assume that role? The children, by consequence, would suffer more in terms of performance in school. Hopefully, the conclusion is not that women will maintain that [role], but [that] men and women will share that role,” Varona explained.   Meanwhile, Dacuycuy also pointed out that women who decide to enter the labor force are confronted with pay gaps. For instance, one study in the book found existing pay differential between men and women in the agricultural sector, especially those not requiring physical effort.

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