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Something has to be done with…

Something has to be done with the protection protocols for our hospital and health workers. There seems to be a local trend that persons who test Covid positive are health workers or their family. Curiously, a considerable number of infections occur not among residents who don’t wear face masks and get closer to other people in a less than 1 meter distance; but among presumably nurses. Maybe we could expand that to frontliners in general; specifically cops and nurses, because the same is happening among our blue clad officers. Fortunately, in this trend, their families who get placed in lockdown by virtue of protocol, do not test positive. At least, that’s a relief that the chain of infection gets cut in that level. But wait, I think we have to draw a line between the health workers and cops. The health workers would understandably get the virus from the patients they interact with; but the cops…. That’s a different discussion. How did the officers get infected? From people they come across in the barricades and checkpoints? Their social interactions are not the same with those of the nurses’. At least, with the hospital staff, we understand that they get close to actual patients. But how do cops get infected? From unwilling pedestrians who walk through checkpoints without protection? If so, then there should have been an outbreak in at least one community. But there hasn’t been any of that in a significant magnitude. So, let’s include that mystery along with high number of Covid cases in Albay and Catanduanes, initial infection of persons without travel history and the nation/nature of the Novel Corona virus in China.

Something has to be done with influential people who smuggle Covid positive cases to avoid quarantine facilities and through police checkpoints. Apparently, Sen. Coco Pimentel and former Sen. Bongbong Marcos have not taught them enough lessons that someone from among us has to bring it home. How do we break this down? It should be a person’s individual responsibility to discontinue or not to initiate any chain of infection of the virus. That is the reason why there is an ordinance to wear face masks, and there is such a thing as social distancing. It is a parent’s responsibility to encourage and ensure that their sons and daughters fulfil the aforementioned personal responsibility for the sake of the child, their family, their community and for crying out loud, all the people he/she would come in contact with in the process of the movement. Although this should be a given fact, it is an authorized person’s responsibility to abide by and implement rules like quarantine and /or isolation despite of a potential patient’s family background, social status or whatever. You simply owe that to yourself, the community and the entire humanity. For the love of life, if you know what I’m talking about, something has to be done with this before power and influence leads to the infection and destruction of a municipality, a district or the whole province.

Something has to be done with public transportation. If you just read those words, you’re probably thinking of just one sector, one industry, one segment of society that loves to go on strike when oil prices go up. It may not strike the same spark of significance as agriculture or manufacturing, but unless we all want to be urban hikers, something has to be done with it. As much as we want to maintain social distance all for the freedom from Covid, employment could not simply work with one passenger tricycles and half-filled jeepneys. Furthermore, is it feasible at all for all companies to transport their employees with shuttles? What is the ratio of the number of companies in Naga City to the available shuttles? Hitching a ride was hard enough when jeepneys and tricycles were accessible; now, one would rather take a hike. Believe me, walking the city streets under the summer sun would still be better than running for a roof when rains rush down. It is not quite clear how school is going to go about when the school year starts, whenever the authorities definitely decide it really starts; because August 24 is still very volatile. To add to that pile, what about when other industries are permitted to open?

Society has to make compromises in the procedures of its functions and self-preservation to pull this through. Work from home should be strongly institutionalized. The daily time record could be made flexible. Maybe the 8 to 5 could be compromised to “as long as” it’s 8 hours, or maybe we could make it 6 hours. Then we need to pump Internet service for those online work. But wait, if Internet use spikes up, wouldn’t that make the connection slow?

“Be strong, and let us fight bravely for our people and the cities of our God. The LORD will do what is good in his sight.“ 1 Chronicles 19:13

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