‘The question is, what is the government doing differently this time around to actually move us in a better place? Unless we get an actual answer to that question, we’ll be stuck in a constant replay of this season 2 that nobody wants to watch—let alone live through.’
THE Enhanced Community Quarantine for NCR + (whatever that means) has been extended, to no one’s surprise. Until when the extension will be has become a week-to-week waiting game, not unlike the waiting for the next episode of your favorite series to drop.
With the cases rising close to per stadium-full per day, we all knew that a one-week ECQ would not be enough. No one argues with the imposition of a lockdown; most folks I know agree that our frontliners need the space to breathe and recoup. However, the frustration I’ve seen is rooted in the lack of viable action from our policy makers—vague promises of help are given, but there are no tangible results when it comes to improving our contact tracing measures, as well as sending help to our health workers.
One doctor on Twitter raised the sad fact that some of his colleagues who were supposed to receive assistance under the Bayanihan to Heal As One Act have not seen a centavo of the said amount.
One also wonders what the government is doing about the capacity of our hospitals—not a day goes by without one coming across several pleas for help on social media about finding hospital space for their loved ones. My doctor friends have been actively helping patients to find space in other hospitals, sometimes as far as Cabanatuan or Batangas, by calling up their colleagues to check for vacancies. Friends have also been lending a hand to help find space for those with COVID by calling up hospitals in NCR and beyond. The results have not been heartening, and directly contradict the data that the Department of Health pushes out.
This entire brouhaha with Ivermectin (quite frustrating on its own, ask anyone who has argued with friends and family about its use for humans) is symptomatic of a deeper fear and desperation with our situation—people are clinging to untested and unproven ways of fighting COVID, despite clear medical guidance from medical professionals. I understand the reaction—getting your hands on Ivermectin is something you can easily do for yourself, without having to depend on anyone else, instead of having to face the dumpster fire that is this government’s response. Any form of desperation is dangerous—and the last thing we want to see is people getting hurt or dying because of mistaken belief. But in case you are curious—Merck (the manufacturer of Ivermectin) has already categorically stated that there is no basis to use the drug against COVID-19.
The responses to these concerns aren’t exactly comforting, either. Instead of double-checking the data given to government, mouth pieces have resorted to attacking those raising these realities. Deflecting is another favored device—that attack on Vice President Leni Robredo as “non-essential” was just tasteless, devious, and had no place in a pandemic. Period.
Denial seems to be the first order of the day, wherein naysayers are summarily dismissed as petty rabble rousers. To begin with, how can government calibrate its response when it chooses to remain in denial about the real situation on the ground? At this rate, it will just keep implementing lockdown after lockdown, time and time again.
As they say, insanity is defined as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. The question is, what is the government doing differently this time around to actually move us in a better place? Unless we get an actual answer to that question, we’ll be stuck in a constant replay of this season 2 that nobody wants to watch—let alone live through.