Anti-Botcha: Mayor Isko orders intensified meat inspections in Manila
Robie de Guzman • August 22, 2019 • 1469
MANILA, Philippines – Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso on Thursday ordered the conduct of intensified inspection in public markets following the seizure of thousands of kilograms of “botcha” or spoiled meat in the capital city since July this year.
Report from the Manila Veterinary Inspection Board presented on Thursday showed that since July 1, around 2,689 kilograms of spoiled beef shanks, pork and chicken meat were seized by authorities from different areas in Manila.
Hot meat are food items that did not pass proper inspection and are deemed unsafe for consumption.
Mayor Isko also ordered concerned local agencies to set up checkpoints in the entry and exit points of Manila Harbor to prevent the entry of spoiled meat to the city.
He also urged the public to be cautious and observant when buying meat products.
Domagoso also called on meat vendors to join in the city government’s campaign against botcha and to make sure to only sold food products from accredited meat establishments. (RRD with details from Harlene Delgado)
MANILA, Philippines – New halfway houses which will cater to cancer patients will soon rise in the Philippine capital, the Manila City government said.
In a statement Monday, Manila City Health Officer Dr. Arnold Pangan said the construction of halfway houses is part of an integrated plan to strengthen the city’s public health facilities.
Pangan said halfway houses will serve as temporary shelters for cancer patients at the Philippine General Hospital as well as the city’s specialized health centers to ease their recovery and lessen transportation expenses.
Likewise, the city government also said it aims to build new facilities for diabetes patients and wellness centers for women.
“Our plans include building specialty centers for diabetes, halfway homes for cancer patients, and women wellness centers,” Pangan said during a consultation meeting with Manila district hospital chiefs and health center directors.
“We are also planning to create Super Health Centers with Vertical Housing for our employees,” he added.
Manila City Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso emphasized that the city government requires mutual cooperation and thorough assessments to provide the best health care services to the people.
“Kaya ako nag a-assess. I govern with data. I want to utilize whatever is here to spend it efficiently and so that the city government will be guided accordingly.”
Domagoso stressed the intent to reestablish the people’s confidence in public health systems through joint effort and correspondence.
“I encourage each and everyone of you, it’s high time to collaborate. I want to declog our hospitals. I want the people of Manila to trust our health centers. ‘Yun ang pangarap natin, ibalik ang dignidad ng mga health centers,” he said.
A scientist is looking into coconut oil as a potential treatment for the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV).
Ateneo de Manila University chemistry professor Dr. Fabian Dayrit said coconut oil has antiviral agents which can help in the treatment of nCoV.
Lauric acid is a fatty acid found in coconut oil while monolaurin is a compound that is produced naturally when one consumes virgin coconut oil (VCO). It is also commercially available through chemical synthesis.
Dr. Dayrit said there had been several clinical studies proving the potential of coconut oil against various diseases including human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and Junin virus which is similar to nCoV.
“As far as the available literature is concerned, it is very promising. Kasi it had been shown to work in other viruses. So, wala namang risk. So, why not try it,” he said.
“It’s not a proof, but there is enough evidence that it might work,” he added.
Dr. Dayrit said that based on research, the said antiviral agents can potentially destroy the cell membrane of a virus and stop its maturity.
“It has been shown that lauric acid and monolaurin can inhibit the replication,” he said.
The Philippines is also abundant in coconut which can produce cheaper coconut oil.
According to the Philippine Coconut Authority, the Philippines is the number one exporter of virgin coconut oil in the world. Coconut oil is also safe for animals which is also used as food supplements for farm animals and pets.
Dr. Dayrit explained that for a proper clinical study you would need a few hundred subjects depending on study design.
“We don’t have that many coronavirus patients. So, I think we have to design it to test it out just to show that it can actually work and we can move on from there,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Department of Health (DOH) is open to conduct clinical tests for the potential of coconut oil.
DOH USec. Eric Domingo said a lot of evidence is needed when it comes to treatment and management. He also calls on researchers to come up ways to look into potential treatments for nCoV.
“We are requesting iyong ating researchers dito kung pwedeng tingnan, (our researchers if they can look into it),” he said.—AAC (with reports from Harlene Delgado)
The Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) is not recommending the general public to wear face masks, saying it should be “reserved for those who really need it”.
In a press conference in Malacañang on Monday (February 3), RITM Director Celia Carlos said the wearing of face masks is recommended for health workers and people with respiratory illness.
“There is now a current shortage of this valuable commodity and let us give them to those who need them most, especially the health workers,” she said.
“Currently, since there is no community transmission of the novel coronavirus in the Philippines, we are not recommending its use for the general public who do not have respiratory symptoms,” she added.
Instead, the health official advised the public to practice proper hygiene by regularly washing their hands. She also advised people to avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth with unclean hands or unwashed hands.
“We need to observe good hand hygiene and we need to eat and drink from safe, clean and reliable sources,” she said.—AAC
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