PBBM: Pass laws creating virology institute, disease control center
‘We have been in consultation with the House of Representatives and the Senate to create these agencies. We will continue to work so that our people are safer, so that our citizens have better access to health care and so that the quality of our health care will improve’
President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Thursday renewed his push for the creation of the virology institute and disease prevention and control center in the Philippines.
Speaking at the 15th Philippine National Health Research System (PNHRS) Week celebration in Pampanga, Marcos Jr. said the two proposed agencies can help the government’s response to future pandemics.
“As your President, I hope my presence here today gives a clear signal that this administration continues to support your endeavors so that together, we can create an enabling environment for the Filipino research community that fosters collaboration and cooperation that will yield solutions that will make lives better for our fellow men and women,” he said.
For Marcos Jr., the passage of a measure creating the Virology Institute of the Philippines would “consolidate disparate research, knowledge and data”, while the passage of a bill creating the Philippine Center for Disease Prevention and Control would prepare the country for “unfortunate warnings” like the pandemics.
“We have been in consultation with the House of Representatives and the Senate to create these agencies. We will continue to work so that our people are safer, so that our citizens have better access to health care and so that the quality of our health care will improve,” he said.
The President also paid tribute to Filipino health researchers for their hard work amid the COVID-19 crisis: “I always start with a note of gratitude and of thanks for your sacrifice and for the risks that you take, and all that you have been able to do to help us through this pandemic… There is nothing more heroic in my mind than what you have achieved.”
He recalled that he was one of the “very early sufferers” of COVID-19 as he tested positive for the virus after coming home from Spain in the second week of March 2020.
“Thank you not only from me as a sufferer of COVID, but for all the millions who somehow have reaped the benefit of your hard work,” he said.
Marcos Jr. recalled how the country’s doctors, scientists and health experts leapt to action to battle the pandemic and find ways to understand and control the spread of the coronavirus.
“There was a total lack of information, of knowledge about this new pandemic. And that is why the work that you did that developed the genome sequencing so that we could follow and identify and detect the different strains as they came about, the test kits that you were able to develop for the local community, the modeling that was done — this was all a fruit of your partnership, and it is something that has never been seen before.”
Marcos Jr. graced the week-long PNHRS celebration, which serves as a venue for health researchers to share their insights and experiences in health research and development. The event is celebrated every second week of August, per Presidential Proclamation 1309 of June 2007.
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