THE Philippine National Police-Medical Reserve Force (PNP-MRF) was tasked to assist in the COVID-19 situation in Batangas amid Taal Volcano’s continuing rumbling activity.
This was the directive of PNP Chief General Guillermo Eleazar, as Batangas Governor Hermilando Mandanas said that hospitals in the province were already full of COVID-19 patients, including those with co-morbidities.
“Doble ang trahedya na kinakaharap ng ating mga kababayan sa Batangas at ako ay humahanga sa katatagan na ipinapakita nila at ng kanilang LGUs sa pagtugon dito gaya ng nakita ko sa pagbisita ko kahapon,” said Eleazar.
PGen. Eleazar visited yesterday some of the evacuation centers in the municipalities of Laurel and Agoncillo to check on the condition of the evacuees and to assess the security and other needs of those affected by the Taal Volcano rumblings.
“Subalit gaano man katatag ay maaring bumigay din kung hindi natin tutukuran ng suporta. That is why I ordered our Medical Reserve Force to be ready for possible deployment to Batangas to assist in attending to the medical needs of the evacuees,” the PNP Chief said.
Eleazar emphasized that PNP personnel are ready to secure and enforce minimum public health safety standards in evacuation facilities to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus. Police assistance desks have also been set up to extend aid to evacuees.
According to the PNP Chief, he also ordered the strict implementation of police checkpoints to prevent residents from returning to their homes in the Permanent Danger Zone or in other restricted areas amid the current status of Taal Volcano, which remains under Alert Level 3.
According to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology, the volcano continues to emit high levels of volcanic sulfur dioxide, which has prompted thousands of residents to flee from their homes.