Cebu Pacific Air, in coordination with the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF) and the Office of Civil Defense, provided special humanitarian flights to 32 medical personnel and cargo of assorted medicines and medical equipment from the Department of Health (DOH) to Siargao as part of an urgent medical mission to Odette-impacted communities.
Two medical teams from Jose B. Lingad Memorial General Hospital and Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital and Sanitarium were deployed to Siargao and Dinagat Island to respond to the stomach flu outbreak in those areas. According to a report of RDRRMC CARAGA, 282 people in Surigao del Norte and 122 in Dinagat Islands were diagnosed with acute gastroenteritis (stomach flu) as of December 25, a week after being devastated by Typhoon Odette.
“As part of our commitment to ensure that every Juan flies, Cebu Pacific Air is proud to have helped the DOH medical teams arrive swiftly and safely in Siargao, to deliver life-saving service to those heavily affected by Typhoon Odette,” said Cebu Pacific Air Chief Commercial Affairs Officer Michael Ivan Shau.
The outbreak was attributed to water from deep wells as the province continues to struggle with power interruptions, preventing water-refilling stations from processing water. Communities are forced to get their drinking water from different sources as transportation problems hamper the delivery of donations and relief goods to those who need them most.
DOH’s Health Emergency Management Bureau Director Arnel Rivera applauded the collaboration of the public and private sectors to enable this life-saving mission.
“This would not have been possible without the coordination between the DOH, Office of Civil Defense, PDRF, and Cebu Pacific Air. With this, we would like to extend our deepest appreciation for the support that these organizations have provided to ensure the speedy arrival of the different DOH teams to the Odette-affected areas. This will be a long continuing process of coordination and partnership among these agencies and we hope for their continued support,” said Rivera.
“Cebu Pacific’s assistance has been crucial in getting the PDRF team, health care professionals, medicine, and relief goods to areas where they were desperately needed. We are grateful to the men and women of the airline for their support,” said PDRF President Butch Meily.
The PDRF team has been mobilizing its private sector network to deliver aid to all the areas affected by Typhoon Odette. The PDRF Emergency Operations Center is also closely monitoring all developments and sending regular updates on the situation on the ground.
PDRF is the primary vehicle for private sector support during emergencies and is headed by co-chairs Manuel V. Pangilinan, Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, and Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle. As an alliance of businesses dedicated to building the disaster management capabilities of the private sector in the country, it works on all areas: prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response, and rehabilitation and recovery.
For more information on how to support communities affected by Typhoon Odette, visit: www.pdrf.org/how-you-can-help/