BACOLOD CITY, Negros Occidental, Philippines – Physician Julius M. Drilon gave a grim and sober assessment about what lies ahead as the city buckles down to face the threat of the COVID19.
“For the next 30 to 90 days, even beyond, we will not be seeing our wives,” he said to reporters gathered for a joint news conference.
The reporters laughed.
They thought Drilon was referring to his wives.
Realizing the misinterpretation, Drilon said he meant the wives of those gathered, including Mayor Evelio Leonardia and other officials who were there for the press briefing.
It was a light moment in the joint briefing led by the city mayor and other local officials who are now in a heightened state of alert after the local council passed yesterday a declaration placing the city under a public health emergency status.
For the most part, the discussion was sober.
With two persons under investigation – both females, one with travel history to Singapore – and 29 other being monitored, the officials called for greater publuc awareness and participation to halt the spread of the sickness.
Leonardia said Bacolenos need to unite and do steps together to prevent infection as the World Health Organization declared the COVID19 as a global pandemic.
Local COVID task force spokesperson Grace Tan called on residents to travel responsibly and practice social distancing.
Council health committee chair Cindy Rojas, on the other hand, called on people to stop hoarding food, medicines, and other necessities to “stop doing this” so as not to put it away from the reach of poor people.
“We are not sleeping on the job,” Drilon added as he called on people to put their “complete trust in your officials.”