June 20, 2024

President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. instructed the Department of Public Works and Highways to prioritize the inspection of hospitals and health care facilities in Abra following the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that jolted the province.

“Do the inspections first of the public buildings. I think your priority will be quite right (if it) is the hospital, uunahin natin even before the government buildings, ‘yung mga offices. Unahin natin ‘yung ospital,” he said during a situation briefing in Abra.

In his visit to the province, the President checked the condition of the Abra Provincial Hospital and its patients.

“Let’s go first to the hospital, let’s go first to the clinics, the health care centers, then we can then go look at the government buildings. After which, puntahan na rin natin ‘yung mga bahay ng mga tao para makita kung safe na sila,” he added.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development-Cordillera reported146 houses are totally damaged while 9,854 are partially damaged as of July 28.

DSWD-Cordillera Director Arnel Garcia said the number could still go up as the assessment is still ongoing and authorities have yet to check the outlying areas.

Provincial officials said evacuation centers were set up in open areas in the province.

Department of Science and Technology Usec. and Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology Officer-in-Charge Renato Solidum, Jr. said residents could go back to their homes once inspections show that structures are safe.

Solidum, however, cautioned aftershocks are expected to continue for several weeks. “People should be ready how to respond properly during aftershocks kasi malakas pa ang posibleng aftershock,” he said. – PNA