MANILA It took only 20 minutes for Richard Serrano Celeste to realize that the change that President Rodrigo Duterte has promised is for real.
Celeste used the social media to share how the government's quick action, through the Emergency Hotline 911, has saved his two-year-old son out of danger.
I was about to sleep the other night when our Baby Abraham cried out loud because he had difficulty breathing normally due to throat irritation, he wrote on Facebook.
Celeste decided to rush the baby to the hospital but transportation was no longer available at midnight in Tipanoy, Iligan City.
He tried to call a former classmate but understandably, it was time for a good night sleep.
With his son still crying, Celeste decided to dial 911 using his cellphone though uncertain if the national emergency hotline really caters to health emergencies.
Our baby still cried and I thought of calling 911 at 11:46 p.m., he recounted.
Some 20 minutes later, the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) of Iligan City reached Celeste's apartment.
They warmly accommodated us and they checked our baby's vital signs while we were on our way to the Adventist Medical Center, Abraham's father said.
Celeste may have spent his birthday the entire day of July 24 at the hospital, but the experience had left a positive impression on him that change has indeed come under the Duterte administration.
As of this writing, our baby is doing well and he was discharged from the hospital this morning. Salamat Lord. 911 is real, change is here, he said in his post, which has already earned more than 1,700 likes and reactions and 500 shares as of posting.
He also thanked the 911 call center agent and the CDRRMO staff for their very quick action.
Kudos for easily locating us despite the not-so-easily-accessible location, Celeste said.
Thank you Lord that 911 really works because being a parent so concerned of his child's welfare will really be bothered, especially if he has no vehicle yet to ride on, he added.
Celeste has encouraged everyone to access 911 if caught in emergency situations.
The 911 and the President's hotline 8888 were launched in August 2016 as 24/7 national public service hotlines for emergencies and complaints, respectively.
Last May 25, Duterte signed Executive Order No. 56 making 911 as the nationwide emergency hotline, replacing PATROL 117, to conform with international standards.
Under Duterte's order, local government units have been enjoined to establish and run local 911 call centers within their areas of jurisdiction but under supervision of the National Call Center.
Emergency Hotlines 911 and 8888 are free of charge and other fees.
Duterte introduced 911 as emergency hotline in Davao City, where he served as mayor for more than two decades. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency