DOH launches Covid-19 emergency hotlines

Those with possible infection of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) or other health concerns may now call a hotline following its launch by the Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday.

In a statement, the DOH said the public may call the hotlines at 02-894-COVID (02-894-26843) and 1555 for any questions or assistance, especially if they have symptoms and known exposure to confirmed cases or patients under investigation.

“The information collected from emergency calls is transmitted to the Covid-19 Emergency Operations Center and other relevant agencies for immediate facilitation and response,” the DOH said.

The hotlines, it said, was launched in collaboration with the National Emergency Hotline of the Department of the Interior and Local Government, PLDT, and Smart Communications. Inc. (Smart).

In addition, the hotlines will be available 24 hours a day and seven days a week, while PLDT and Smart subscribers may call 1555 free of charge.

“Subscribers from other networks can access the 1555 hotline once technical adjustments are completed,” the DOH said.

For the first few days of its launch, DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III called on the public to limit the use of the hotlines to relevant and important calls to ensure that medical assistance will be provided to those in need.

“We expect an influx of calls in the first few days of the launch of the call center. We ask for the public’s cooperation and patience to allow only relevant and important calls to go through,” Duque said.

He said the department is working with both public and private partners supplement the technical know-how needed in the fight against the viral pandemic.

PLDT chair and chief executive officer (CEO) Manuel Pangilinan, for his part, said the company’s collaboration is part of its “continuing efforts” to fight the spread of Covid-19.

"We hope that with our services, we can help provide much-needed information that will enable health authorities to deliver proper patient diagnosis and treatment and ultimately stop the spread of this disease,” Pangilinan said.

On Wednesday, the Department of Transportation rolled out 10 buses that would provide free transportation to health workers from the Parañaque Integrated Terminal Exchange and the Bayani Fernando Central Terminal in Marikina City to several hospitals within Metro Manila.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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