Sarangani gets additional Blue Angels vs. Covid-19
GENERAL SANTOS CITY (May 21, 2021) – Glaselle Bendol (extreme left), medical technologist of the Provincial Department of Health Office (PDOHO), evaluates Ma. Kristyl Joy Ytac (extreme right), medical technologist of Sarangani Healthcare Facility (SHF), as she puts on personal protective equipment (PPE) during the PPE donning, doffing and specimen collection training on May 20. The activity was conducted to edify new members of Sarangani Blue Angels or swabbers of the Diagnostic and Testing Support Teams. Allan Roy Cagampang, provincial disease surveillance coordinator, said the activity was in line with the province’s risk-based target testing for the ongoing pandemic. The Provincial Government of Sarangani is deploying its Blue Angels to perform risk-based target testing among barangays in Sarangani reported with high cases of Covid-19 to avert the further spread of the coronavirus. The seminar was participated in by some 20 medical technologists, police officers and representatives from each of the seven municipalities of the province. The conduct of risk-based target testing started on May 19 until May 29. During the 10 days duration, Cagampang said a surge of Covid-19 cases is likely expected but after all active cases will be contained, the consequential drop of cases would be “remarkable.” The activity was devised by the Regional Health Office and implemented by the local government units of Sarangani Province with the support of Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon, Vice Governor Elmer De Peralta, Deputy Speaker Ruel Pacquaio and the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan. Cagampang also appealed to the public to always practice the minimum health standards to “at least” lessen the spread of the coronavirus. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)</>
Prepare emergency kit, flood-prone area residents told
ALABEL, Sarangani (May 18, 2021) – (From right) Joey Dela Cruz and Nicon Perez, Alabel Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MDRRMC) staff talk with Jovel Catipay, 33, a resident of Purok Fatima-B, Barangay Bagacay during their inspection for the affected areas of the heavy rainfall and flash flood on May 18. Perez said, they checked over and conducted an assessment for the affected households and properties damaged by the recent flash flood in the area. According to the report from the MDRRMC-Alabel, heavy rain started to fall around 12 midnight that lasted for almost five hours which caused the immediate rise of the water level in the nearby creeks and rivers. As a result, the water quickly overflowed and affected the residents living near the area. Perez said,” umabot yung baha ng knee hanggang waist level at may mga bahay na napasukan ng tubig at nakapaminsala ng mga ari-arian kagaya ng mga electric appliances.” He added, rescue teams from the MDRRMC immediately arrived at the affected locations and ordered the residents for an immediate evacuation, and were temporarily housed at Barangay Poblacion gym until the situation improved at around six in the morning. More than 20 families were evacuated and were immediately provided assistance. Perez also gave a reminder especially for those individuals living in the flood-prone areas to always prepare an emergency kit composed of canned goods good for three to seven days; enough water; clothing; portable power source; phone; radio; toiletries; first aid kit and medicines. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Flashflood hits Alabel; MDRRMO to the rescue
ALABEL, Sarangani (May 18, 2021) – Anacel Bancaerin, 29, of Purok Cogonal, Barangay Poblacion removes some mud from their furniture affected by the flash flood caused by the heavy rainfall on May 18. According to the report from the Alabel Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MDRRMC), around 12 midnight, heavy rain started to fall and lasted for almost five hours which caused the immediate rise of the water level in the nearby creeks and rivers. As a result, the water quickly overflowed and affected the residents living near the area. Bancaerin said, “nagsugod ang ulan mga around alas dose sa kadlawon og consistent iyang kakusog hantod mga 2am, from that time until 4 am medyo naging moderate na siya pero makaapekto gihapon sa pagtaas sa tubig, hantod ganinang mga 5 am may taligsik gihapon.” As the water continues to rise and started to enter their house, Bencaerin said “hinay-hinay na namo gipanaka ang uban namong mga gamit labi na tong mga dili pwede mabasa, pero among mga foams og sofa naabtan jud sa tubig maong among ginalimpyohan karon og ipabulad aron muuga.” She also said that rescue teams came in the middle of the heavy rain and assisted them. The MDRRMC-Alabel continues to remind all the residents living the flood-prone areas to always have an emergency kit composed of canned goods good for three to seven days; enough water; clothing; portable power source; phone; radio; toiletries; first aid kit and medicines. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Mild sore throat, colds, flu or mild exhaustion? Who you gonna call? Contact tracers!
ALABEL, Sarangani (March 17, 2021) – Dr. Arvin Alejandro (left), provincial health officer, leads the reorientation of Sarangani Covid-19 contact tracers on May 14 at the Capitol gym. The reorientation was conducted to improve their contact tracing capacity, which according to Alejandro is a major step in the intervention to mitigate the spread of Covid-19. Alejandro said the contact tracing must be done within 24 hours and all identified primary contacts particularly the close contacts “must be isolated and tested immediately.” He also disclosed that the increase of confirmed cases in the province is due to the massive testing conducted in the last two weeks which increased the province’s usual count to 25%. He said the contact tracing must be strengthened in the entire province and must be coupled with strict isolation “because this will become ineffective kung walang strict isolation among the identified individuals.” Alejandro also reminded the employees in all Local Government Units (LGU), if they feel even very mild symptoms like mild sore throat, colds, flu or mild exhaustion, employees must submit themselves in their provincial or municipal health offices and must be subject to antigen testing. The reorientation was attended by some 40 contact tracers from Maasim, Kiamba, Maitum and Malungon. Alejandro also said that they will be expanding the orientation among the big companies in the province. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Sarangani Covid-19 contact tracers “indispensable in this fight” – Gov. Solon
ALABEL, Sarangani (March 17, 2021) – Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon (on-screen) graces the reorientation of Sarangani Covid-19 contact tracers on May 14 at the Capitol gym. Solon commended the hard work and dedication of all the contact tracers despite the risk that they are facing in doing their job. “You are really indispensable in this fight that we’ve been battling for over a year now and we will never be successful kung wala kayo,” Solon said. “Isa kayo sa mga lifeblood ng probinsya para hindi kumalat yung virus sa atin.” Solon also thanked the Philippine National Police for assisting the contact tracers and for the continued enforcement of the safety protocols. Solon gave some tips and reminded the contact tracers to always wear “only” the proper protective equipment such as the face shield and mask, “dahil kahit anong variant pa yan, hindi makakalusot sa inyo yan.” The governor together with Vice Governor Elmer De Peralta, Deputy Speaker Congressman Rogelio “Ruel” Pacquiao and the members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan also plans to give the contact tracers a gift as an appreciation for tirelessly doing their job amid the pandemic. The governor also offered a prayer for the contact tracers which focused on their protection and additional strength in delivering their service to the province. The said activity was attended by some 40 contact tracers from Maasim, Kiamba, Maitum and Malungon. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Sarangani enforces tightened border control, stringent practice of health protocols
ALABEL, Sarangani (May 17, 2021) – Some officers of the Philippine Army and Philippine National Police join forces in manning the entry point of Sarangani Province on May 17 at Barangay Maribulan. The officers reminded the passersby to always practice the minimum health protocols particularly the proper wearing of face mask and shield. Sarangani is currently under the strengthened implementation of the Modified General Community Quarantine by virtue of Executive Order No. 16 released by Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon imposing tightened border control and other measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the province. The governor also strongly advocates the stringent practice of the health protocols for this will always be everyone’s strong protection against the coronavirus. As of May 16, Sarangani has already 897 total Covid-19 cases of which 169 are active; 710 have already recovered and 18 are reported under Covid-19 related deaths. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Covid-19 alert for Landbank Alabel clients from May 1 to 14
ALABEL, Sarangani (May 17, 2021) - The LandBank of the Philippines (LBP) Alabel branch is temporarily closed due to reported Covid-19 cases in some of its staff. On May 17 the LBP has already conducted essential moves to deter and contain the further spread of the coronavirus. The management also informs its clients to temporarily direct their transactions to the nearby branches in General Santos City. As of this writing, contact tracing is being done and the management continues to ask for the cooperation of all the individuals who have been in the branch from May 1 to 14 to submit themselves for proper guidance and provide testing if needed. The Provincial Local Government of Sarangani, headed by Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon, continues to remind all the Sarangans to stringently follow the minimum health protocols - the simplest move anyone can do, but if collectively done will bring a big impact in the province in its fight against Covid-19. (Jake Narte-Joshua John Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Sarangani Bay marks Ocean Month; coastal villages urged to properly dispose plastics, face masks
SARANGANI BAY (May 17, 2021) – As part of the celebration of the “Month of the Ocean” this May, the Protected Area Management Office - Sarangani Bay Protected Seascape (PAMO-SBPS) together with the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) Region 12 conducted a marine mammal monitoring activity on May 12 to 13.
The said activity is regularly done to monitor the frequency of marine mammals and their usual sighting and location; to estimate their population and density, and to observe their behavior and activities within the bay.
During the monitoring activity, some 150 to 200 Spinner dolphins (Stenella longirostris) and Risso's dolphins (Grampus griseus) were monitored and documented near the coastal waters of Barangay Kawas in Alabel town.
The Risso’s dolphins were spotted basking under the heat of the sun while the spinner dolphins were observed actively moving.
According to Gary John Cabinta, Ecosystems Management Specialist of the DENR-Sarangani, the Risso’s dolphins are commonly identified by their linear scars and big dorsal fins. They are usually medium-sized, grey-colored dolphins and could grow up to four meters.
Spinner dolphins, on the other hand, are small dolphins that could grow to about two meters and are known for their acrobatic spins when they leap or jump out of the water.
Cabinta said the sighted species are frequently seen near the waters of Alabel, Malapatan, Glan and General Santos City.
He said the presence of the dolphins indicates that Sarangani Bay remains healthy and still owns a balanced ecosystem.
Cabinta also urged the households situated in the coastal communities to maintain the cleanliness of the bay and to properly dispose their wastes “especially those plastics and make sure that these will not reach the immediate waters to keep all sea creatures safe.”
Likewise, the Protected Area Management Board (PAMB) and PAMO continuously advocate the coastal barangays to establish material recovery facilities (MRF) to spread awareness to the community on the proper disposal of their wastes.
The monitoring activity was also participated in by some selected students and content creators from all over Region 12 to showcase the beauty of Sarangani Bay and raise more awareness for its protection and conservation.
The theme of this year’s Ocean Month is “The Science We Need for the Ocean We Want”. Its objective is to communicate and let different stakeholders encounter the science in the bay. One of the best rallying points for its conservation is to let everyone experience it.
Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon has been actively supporting the marine mammal monitoring activity with his Sulong Kalikasan program and has done numerous projects to preserve and nurture the marine resources in Sarangani bay.
The month of May was declared as the “Month of the Ocean” by virtue of Presidential Proclamation No. 57 signed by then-President Joseph Estrada in December 1998 which mandates the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Agriculture through the BFAR to spearhead the activities of the Ocean Month in collaboration with the different sectors of the society. (Joshua John S. Pantonial/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Photos by Clarenz Caballero taken during the conduct of the marine mammal monitoring activity on May 12.
PLEASE COOPERATE! Blue Angels to do Sarangani-wide Covid-19 target testing
ALABEL, Sarangani (May 13, 2021) – Members of the Diagnostic and Testing Support Teams from all over Sarangani, led by Medical Technologist Federico Yadao of the Provincial Health Office, receive their “Jump Kits” given by Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon on May 12 during their Orientation and Update on Biosecurity and Biosafety in Antigen Testing Protocol at the Capitol gym. Governor Solon provided the essential kits and initiated the virtual send-off for the said health workers who will be the frontliners in the kick-off of the Covid-19 Target Testing efforts of the provincial government of Sarangani starting May 19 to May 29. The provincial and municipal teams, or the so-called Blue Angels of Sarangani (because of their blue uniforms or PPEs), consist of medical technologists, doctors, swabbers, and encoders who will perform antigen and RT-PCR testing to probable Covid-19 patients. In the 10 days target testing, Yadao said they aim to conduct 6,000 tests province-wide so a surge in Covid cases is likely to be expected. But Yadao clarified, “tumataas ang kaso pag nagtest tayo then after that in two weeks kasi maa-isolate mo naman yung mga nagpositive doon, in two weeks talagang remarkable yung pagbaba nyan kasi maa-isolate mo na nga.” Yadao also continues to appeal to the public to always follow health protocols such as wearing of facemask, face shield, 2-meter distancing, and hand washing “kasi kung wala, babalik pa rin tayo sa ganito at napapagod rin yung mga health workers natin.” The Blue Angels’ jump kits contain personal protective equipment (PPEs), disinfectants, vitamins, and specimen carrier which will be used as protection for the frontline workers. According to Yadao, the provincial government will be doing “targeted testing na yung objective is really to control yung transmission.” “Part ng plan ng pagbaba ng kaso natin is we need to target testing rather than mass testing kasi pag mass testing, resource-based yan, pag resource-based ibig sabihin pag wala na yung testing kits mo, wala ka ng ite-test, pero kung targeted testing siya meron siyang requirements kung saang area mo ilalagay yung target testing,” Yadao further explained. (Martin Fernando Bernad Jr. – Jori Mae Samillano/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)
Alabel pilots food-for-peace
ALABEL, Sarangani (May 10, 2021) – Local farmers from the upland barangays of Alabel have started to sell their farm produce at the food hub launched by the municipal government on May 6 in barangay Alegria.
Every Thursday, the Food Hub Day is held at the Alabel Farmers Scientist Association (AFSA) Bldg., Purok New Bohol in Alegria. (The town of Maitum also runs a “laray” market every Thursday for several years already.)
Farmers from Alegria and the neighboring barangays like Pag-Asa, Datal Anggas, Bagacay, Kawas, Baluntay, and Tokawal were invited by the local government to display and sell their vegetables, fruits, and crops in the food hub at a reasonable price.