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Metro hospitals on code blue alert for Black Nazarene procession

By: - Reporter / @santostinaINQ
/ 12:03 AM January 09, 2017
Philippines Black Nazarene

In this Jan. 9, 2015 file photo, Filipino devotees carry the image of the Black Nazarene for its annual procession to celebrate its feast day, in Manila, Philippines. The raucous celebration drew tens of thousands of devotees in a barefoot procession around Manila streets. AP FILE PHOTO

MANILA — The Department of Health (DOH) on Sunday placed all hospitals in Metro Manila on Code Blue Alert to ensure the safety of the millions of devotees who are expected to participate in the Black Nazarene procession.

“Hospitals in Metro Manila are now in Code Blue,” Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial said Sunday afternoon.

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The DOH earlier placed the hospitals along the Traslacion route on Code White Alert for the procession.

Code White Alert means that all hospital personnel are on standby for deployment and augmentation for medical and other services as necessary; Code Blue Alert means that 50 percent of all hospital personnel shall report for duty in the facility to render medical and other services; while Code Red Alert means that 100 percent of hospital personnel shall report for duty in the facility to render medical and other services.

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Ubial said the DOH would be in constant communication with the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

“Depending on NDRRMC meeting, we might call code red alert soon,” Ubial added.

She said medical teams have been installed and made accessible to those who would join the procession.

“We have four DOH standby teams at MMDA (Gwapotel) Command along with four partner teams from Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Bureau of Fire Protection, and Philippine Red Cross (PRC)…. Eight hospital teams will be deployed in eight segments of the route of Traslacion,” the DOH chief said.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Red Cross – in collaboration with different agencies – will deploy 58 ambulances; and set up seven first aid stations and welfare desks in some receiving hospitals. There will also be more than 400 personnel, one amphibian, three rescue boats, one 6×6 military truck, one fire truck, two motorcycles, one rescue truck, and one humvee.

At least, 13 PRC chapters within Metro Manila will participate in the Red Cross operation during the event while other nearby chapters will be put on standby.

The PRC will set up the first aid stations and welfare desks throughout the path of the Black Nazarene procession and will be positioned at the Aquino monument, Round table (Manila City Hall), Liwasang Bonifacio, Plaza Mexico (Post Office),  Lacson (Sta. Cruz area), San Sebastian, and near Quiapo Church.  These stations will be able to cater minor and major injuries, as well as provide tracing and restoring family links and psychosocial support.

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Aside from the first aid stations, PRC volunteers and staff will be engaged to conduct foot patrol, ambulance assistance/patient transport and water rescue so that the devotees can easily get medical and emergency assistance.  SFM

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TAGS: Armed Forces of the Philippines, Black Nazarene, Black Nazarene procession, Bureau of Fire Protection, city of Manila, code blue alert, crowd, crowd control, crowd management, Department of Health, emergency services, gwapotel, hospitals, Manila, medical services, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, Paulyn Ubial, Philippine National Police, Philippine Red Cross, Public safety, Safety, Security, Traslacion
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