IN LIGHT of the news that 2.5 million pesos worth of tuob kits were acquired by the Cebu City Government, I really feel the need to disclose one fact when I was admitted for SEVERE COVID.
During the critical period when the risk for intubation and other complications were high and I was already in cytokine storm, a very important drug, Tocilizumab (Actemra) was badly needed. I still believed this was a turning point in my battle against this disease.
The decision making for the medical team to give me this drug was also not easy since I had, what it seems to be some form of liver injury but that’s a discussion for another time. This drug costs around 40,000 to 60,000 (pesos) for ONE vial and during that time stocks of this drug in the hospital where I was admitted (VSMMC) apparently ran out some days before.
At the time when stocks of this drug were dwindling and being used left and right, it was doubtful if the other hospitals would sell theirs to us. It so happened though that at around the time I was admitted, 24 vials of this drug were DONATED, and I was the first one to use the donated stocks.
Now here’s the shocker. THIS DRUG WAS DONATED BY A POLITICIAN NOT FROM CEBU. I repeat, NOT FROM CEBU. I researched this person, and he HAD NO BISAYA BLOOD IN HIM at all. Yet, he chose the correct thing to donate. It practically saved my life as the improvement post-infusion was dramatic.
Let me repeat and make this clear again, a politician much like our mayor, councilors, governor, etc., BUT NOT FROM CEBU AND NOT A BISAYA donated 24 vials of this expensive drug to VSMMC to be used by patients for FREE. Now, contrast that with what our officials are doing. It’s an insult. Really.
**(EDIT/UPDATE) PS. I never planned to disclose his name initially (until a few hours after posting this), since the hospital hasn’t made his donation public yet in the official FB page, but since one of the senior medical house staff and ICS member already disclosed his name on FB, then I find no reason not to disclose his name here: Governor Dennis Pineda of Pampanga. I and Cebu owe you a debt of gratitude. Thank you!
(John Albert Montoya, a pediatric cardiologist at Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center, in his FB post of July 11, 2020 that has so far garnered 2.8K likes, 306 comments and 2.8 shares)