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DOH: Hospitals on ‘high alert’ for celebrations

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The Department of Health (DOH) said Sunday it has placed all local hospitals on “high alert” ahead of the New Year revelry.

“Itong darating na papalapit na New Year, lahat ng ating mga hospitals ay naka-‘high alert’ for all individuals with injuries and emergencies na posibleng mangyari,” DOH Officer-in-Charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said.

Vergeire said DOH officials will inspect hospitals to check their readiness to attend to firework-related injuries or any form of emergency.

On December 29, the DOH will visit 4 hospitals starting with the Las Piñas Trauma Center, Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center, East Avenue Medical Center, and Amang Rodriguez Medical Center for the “Oplan Iwas Paputok” campaign.

On December 31, Field Implementation and Coordination Team officials will be visiting communities in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao to ensure that families are celebrating the coming of 2023 safely.

The DOH said it has always advocated for the safe practice of the holidays by avoiding fireworks and firecrackers.

“Families and individuals are strongly encouraged to avoid purchasing and using fireworks this holiday season and instead observe fireworks displays from afar or ones that are professionally prepared and organized,” Vergeire said.

Families, the DOH said, can produce loud noises from other sources, such as loud speakers, horns, percussion, pans and pots among many others for a safer and more joyous holiday celebration.

The DOH called upon the local government units and the private sector to join and support the campaign to help reduce the number of firework-related injuries and casualties.

“Through this mobilization our partnership can help in promoting alternative and safer ways of celebrating the holiday season,” it said.

The DOH assured that it will be proactively monitoring and conducting surveillance activities of the situation on the ground.

On the first day of 2023, the DOH will be hosting a post-New Year Media Forum and will inspect hospitals in Baguio City and the surrounding areas.

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