Surigao prepares for Ebola with expected influx of OFWs during Christmas

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews/11 November) — The Caraga Regional Hospital in Surigao City is now undertaking preparations against the possible entry of the dreaded Ebola virus in anticipation of the influx of Overseas Filipino Workers who are coming home for Christmas.

Hospital chief Dr. Andres M. Dolar said their preparations include the procurement of additional personnel protective equipment and rehabilitation of an isolation ward for Ebola patients.

Dolar, in an interview with MindaNews Tuesday said their isolation facility was built during the onslaught of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, another viral disease.

He said they will conduct trainings for hospital staff on handling suspected carriers of the Ebola virus.

“This disease is really dreadful that’s why we’re preparing hard because once you have this you only have a 50-50 chance. Either you die or recover,” Dolar said.

He said they are looking for suppliers of personnel protective equipment since only a few can be found in the market. “We were advised to get at least a minimum of 20 sets of PPEs.”

He said they will start the awareness campaign on Ebola in the city and the province next week.

He said the Department of Health aided by the World Health Organization will hold a training on Ebola virus to all local government units in the region.

“We just came from the seminar in Manila. Five of us from Caraga Regional Hospital attended it,” he said.

Dolar stressed that if someone contracted the disease, they would keep it from the public know in order not to cause panic.

“Dili na puydi isaba unless it is confirmed kay usually kon naa suspected pa man,” he said, adding the person concerned will not be named publicly.


Members of the Surigao City Health Office staff attended a two-day seminar on Ebola virus that ended Tuesday.

Dr. Emmanuel A. Plandano Jr., chief of Surigao City Health Office said Tuesday that their personnel were being taught on handling Ebola patients.

Surigao City and the provinces of Surigao del Norte, Dinagat province and parts of Agusan del Norte are expecting an influx of people coming from different parts of the world during the holiday season.

Plandano asked people suspected of having the disease to cooperate with health workers. (Roel N. Catoto/MindaNews)