Art Yap impressed by Bohol emergency team’s fight vs Covid-19

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TAGBILARAN CITY – Governor Arthur Yap on Tuesday commended the Bohol Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF), formerly the Provincial Emergency Management Administration (PEMA), for shepherding Bohol during the critical months of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) crisis.

Yap extended his appreciation to former provincial administrator Ae Damalerio for the many accomplishments of the body during the enhanced community quarantine period and in preventing the entry of the coronavirus in the province.

“First of all, Damalerio led the process of establishing the PEMA which oversees the entire crisis management in prevention of Covid-19,” Yap said.

The governor also appreciated Damalerio’s effective leadership of the former PEMA, which transitioned into the Bohol IATF on Monday, in carrying out various executive orders to intensify the protection of the Boholanos against the coronavirus.

He said the Security and Public Safety Cluster of PEMA has continued to institute and strengthen security measures to maintain public peace and safety and has been in strict implementation of all executive orders.

According to him, the emergency management team was able to put together the Offshore Boholanos Coordinating Team (OBCT) that is tasked to specially respond to the needs of locally stranded individuals all over the country.

“Although confronted with initial challenges, the PEMA remains on top of the situation in successfully bringing home and facilitating the return of our OFWs who have undergone mandatory quarantine, and more are still coming,” Yap added.

PEMA tapped the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) as its external secretariat and serves as “the fulcrum for all local government unit coordination and the process of travel clearances,” the governor said.

PDRRMO continues to be PEMA’s external secretariat.

PEMA also formulated emergency response trainings and orientations for all municipal health officers (MHOs) and disaster risk reduction and management officers (DRRMOs) in preparation for contact tracing and calibrated lockdown procedures.

The Technical Working Group cluster of PEMA headed by Dr. Yul Lopez and other private medical consultants, laid down an emergency response plan, including preparation of Governor Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital as Bohol’s Covid-19 medical facility.

The team’s Emergency Communications cluster has continued to be available 24 hours in response to emergencies and updates to the PEMA internal secretariat. (PNA)