Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on Friday conceded that a significant number of nurses have stopped working due to the risk of acquiring the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
According to Sandra Aguinaldo’s report on “24 Oras,” Duque said that some private hospitals are facing issues with staffing.
“Nakausap ko ‘yung ibang mga private hospitals na ang sinasabi ng kanilang mga directors, mataas ‘yung attrition rate. It’s not because kulang sa nurse kung hindi marami rin ang mga magulang na ayaw na nila pabalikin ang kanilang mga anak na mga nurses para mag-trabaho sa mga ospital dahil ‘yung takot at kaba na baka mahawa sila,” Duque said.
“May mga personal reasons, eh, kung bakit ‘yung iba ayaw pumasok o binitawan na ang kanilang mga puwesto,” he added.
Philippine General Hospital Director Gerardo Legaspi said that they underestimated the fear brought by COVID-19.
“We underestimated the fear that was associated with COVID-19 and managing… not only our own fear but of the other people around you,” Legaspi said.
Duque said that they also faced difficulty in deploying doctors to the barrios in Cebu. The doctors had argued that they were needed in the areas they were serving.
Due to this, Duque said that it was important to let medical workers feel that they were being supported by the government amid the pandemic.
“Hindi mo naman matanggal din ‘yung takot pero ang kapalit naman non gumagawa tayo ng paraan na mapaunlad ang kanilang compensation ang benefits,” Duque said.
“Ito nga sa Bayanihan Act 2, meron nga tayo ritong ipinasama na compensation and benefits, no, ‘yung routine testing, life insurance, accommodation, transport, [and] mental health services,” he added. — Joahna Lei Casilao/DVM, GMA News