Doctors and professors from the University of the Philippines gave their assessment on Duterte administration’s COVID-19 response four months after it implemented a lockdown to curb transmission of virus.
UP experts have given the administration a failing mark in its response to the crisis.
Major lapses have been identified by the experts such as the failure of meeting the daily-target in COVID-19 testing. Despite the region-wide lockdown, hospitals in the country is still overwhelmed with patients who contracted the novel virus.
Dr. Joshua San Pedro, co-founder of the Coalition for People’s Right to Health noted that the Philippines is the only country in the Western Pacific Region which still have community transmission. Neighboring nations only have clusters or imported cases which are easier to control.
Dr. Edeline dela Paz of the Health Alliance for Democracy also criticized the lockdown which she believed was ineffective. According to her, people had no stable support economically. She also questioned if the lockdown was really a health response to a health crisis or a reflection of a repressive government.
But President Rodrigo Duterte’s Cabinet Secretary cried that such an assessment is unfair.
Spokesperson Harry Roque, meanwhile, is inviting the critics from UP to help the country’s coronavirus task force. To recall, Roque also celebrated the country’s “victory” last June when the government “beat” UP’s predicted 60,000 cases.
To date, the national tally of coronavirus infections stand at 76,444 with 50,063 active cases.