Bureau of Quarantine needs more personnel as travel bans lifted

Benise Balaoing, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 06 2021 07:14 PM

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MANILA – The Bureau of Quarantine is waiting for additional funds to be able to hire more personnel as it expects more international arrivals in the country, its chief said Monday.

The Philippines has lifted the travel ban on India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia effecting Monday even as it continues to battle a spike in infections due to the more infectious COVID-19 Delta variant.

“Ang initial request po namin is 359 (personnel) since December po. Ang kailangan po namin is at least 200 pong personnel," Bureau of Quarantine director Dr. Roberto Salvador Jr. said.

Salvador said the bureau currently only has five to 10 personnel taking care of 100 to 150 patients in each of its 15 quarantine hotels. 

He said he expects the funds that will enable them to boost their manpower will be released soon.
 
“Na-consider na po tayo. So anytime po siguro mabibigay na po yung budget na allotted po ng (Department of Health) po sa atin."

Salvador said the personnel they will be hiring will not just be those to be assigned in quarantine facilities but also those who will be in charge of issuing yellow cards to travelers who need it.

“Ang Bureau of Quarantine po, hindi lang po pagbabantay ng hotel galing sa restricted country yung function namin. Kami din po yung mga nag-aalaga ng mga OFW na nagpa-positive sa mga hotel positive facility po natin. Ngayon po, yung increase ng demand ng yellow card, kailangan po namin ng additional people para po ma-operate namin yung satellite station,” he said.

--ANC, 6 September 2021