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5 emergency 911 hotline telecommunicators infected with COVID-19, DILG spox says


At least five telecommunicators of Emergency 911 Hotline have been infected with COVID-19,  Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) spokesperson Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said on Monday.

"Medyo may kaunti po tayong problema dahil nagkasakit po ang ating mga emergency telecommunicators, naapektuhan po tayo ng pandemya. Doon po sa una naming report ay may dalawa tayong nagpositibo," Malaya said in an interview with Unang Hirit.

"Ito po 'yung mga DOH call centers na naka-assign sa emergency 911 national call center natin tapos mayroon pa pong nadagdag as of last night na nareport sa akin ang ating executive director, mayroon na naman pong tatlo na nagpositibo din,” he added.

He said because of this, they have been rerouting calls to local call centers to address the situation.

"Dahil po sa sitwasyong ito ay temporarily nireroute natin ang mga tawag sa 911 papunta doon sa mga local call centers so hindi po natin inaasahan ang pangyayaring ito pero kailangan po nating harapin ang sitwasyon na ito," he said.

Malaya sought understanding from the public who utilizes the Emergency 911 Hotline, saying that the health and safety of emergency telecommunicators should also be ensured.

"Humihingi po kami ng pag-intindi sa ating mga kababayan dahil kailangan din po nating siguraduhin din 'yung kaligtasan at kalusugan ng ating emergency call center agents," he said.

He added that the problem is already being addressed. Malaya said there have been trainees this August but they cannot be deployed yet as some of them also tested positive for COVID-19.

He advised the public to use hotlines of local government units and police stations if they have complaints or important concerns.—AOL, GMA News