The end of the COVID-19 pandemic may be “in sight” as far as the World Health Organization is concerned. But for Filipino health workers, their rightful hazard pay and allowances remain nowhere to be seen.
“We strongly urge the suspension of the Philhealth premium hike amid the soaring prices of basic goods, commodities and services. The hike has already caused the failure of payment of teachers’ loans with their measly salaries barely sufficient for their daily needs following the implementation of the premium hike last June 15.”
“It pains me to see (tarpaulins) of politicians and partylists claiming to represent our voices, even using images of nurses to boost their campaign. But the truth is, most of them were nowhere to be found when we were fighting for our rights and welfare,” Filipino nurse Pauline Budy said.
How can we go on duty if we, workers, could hardly breathe?
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The Alliance of Health Workers said health workers are human beings who need enough rest when they are tired and sick.
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“Almost all of the expenses were taken from our savings. Aside from this, it is taking a constant toll on our mental wellbeing especially since we have to think about our work and studies during the [supposed] recovery period.”
As daily toll of COVID-19 cases continues to rise, health workers reiterate call for a strong national public health system
“We need to strengthen our public health system. We can do this through the implementation of a free, comprehensive, and progressive public health system in the country.”
“Testing remains as the vital link to the rest of the public health strategies of contact tracing and isolation, in order to truly mitigate the spread of more infectious variants like Omicron in communities.”
The campaign asserting their rights and welfare won for them some of their much-deserved benefits, and led to the expansion and consolidation of their unions and organizations.
“We don’t have a concept of disease surveillance where communities are regularly tested, or in looking for the possible source of infection.”
Anakpawis Party-list First Nominee Rafael Mariano said, “We have been calling for free mass testing and medical support since 2020. These are the fundamental concerns of poor families, they are not able to take the test immediately and still want to work so that the family can have something to eat.”