Gov’t urged to provide aid to pregnant moms, babies during quarantine
MANILA, Philippines — Senator Grace Poe on Tuesday urged the government to provide essential relief assistance to families with pregnant mothers and children aged 24 months and below as Luzon remains under quarantine due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
In a statement, Poe underscored the need for government intervention for children in their first 1,000 days to spare them from the impact of the outbreak.
“While our eyes are firmly focused on defeating the virus, we must not forget the babies and children who should be protected from hunger and malnutrition,” Poe said.
“In any crisis, the children are among the vulnerable who suffer disproportionately,” she added.
Poe proposed that funds under Republic Act 11148 or the Kalusugan at Nutrisyon ng Mag-Nanay Act be used to guarantee that mothers and babies have continuous supply of nutritious food amid the quarantine period.
The law, which authored and sponsored, ensures that adequate funding support in addressing malnutrition among mothers and their newborn children in the first 1,000 days.
“It takes a village to raise a child. We should work together to give the children the health and nutrition they deserve,” the senator said.
She added that it is important that social services dealing with the pandemic are focused on assisting children.
“Caring for babies in the midst of this crisis is ensuring our own future and hope,” Poe said.
Poe further emphasized that malnourishment of the mother and the child will affect the development of the brain and functions of the organs, whose effects are irreversible beyond 1,000 days.
Poe also commended barangays who extend services to the people, especially to those belonging in the most vulnerable sectors.
“This must include pregnant and lactating mothers and children in their first 1,000 days. What the future will look like for them is our responsibility today,” Poe said.
The senators said she earlier donated full sets of personal protective equipment to the Dr. Jose Fabella Memorial Hospital which is a maternal and newborn facility as her support to the care of mothers and children.
To date, Philippine health officials have confirmed a total of 6,599 COVID-19 cases in the country.
Of the number, 437 have died, while total of recovered patients is at 654.
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