The Taguig City government launched the Four Strategic Actions in its continuing campaign to fight the deadly coronavirus disease.
The campaign include the Systematic Mass Approach to Responsible Testing (SMART) Program for COVID-19 disease detection, Risk Assessment for Non-Communicable (or lifestyle-related or LRDs) Disease Prevention and Control, Tuberculosis (TB) Detection, Care and Treatment, and its ongoing Vaccination against COVID-19.
The projects came in collaboration with the Megaworld Corp., and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) thru the University Research Co., LLC (URC). It was launched at Forbes Town Center in Bonifacio Global City on May 7.
The SMART Program aims to promote safe and efficient COVID-19 testing to be accessible for every Taguigeno. Aside from Barangay Health Centers, the city also offers free testing at drive-thru testing in BGC every Wednesday and Lakeshore Complex every Friday, and Park N’ Test in Vista Mall Parking Building.
“Improving lifestyle, and keeping healthy is important in the fighting against COVID-19, as comorbidities worsen the COVID-19 infection, experts suggest that we must also tackle lifestyle-related diseases thru the Non-Communicable Diseases Prevention and Control program of the city,” said Mayor Lino Edgardo Cayetano.
Once assessed to be of risk for LRDs – obesity, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, among others, the city government will provide free medicines delivered direct to the doorsteps of patients.
Complimentary programs that also aim to sustain the wellness of residents include the promotion of cycling by improving bikeways around the city. All these interventions are steps to a healthy lifestyle.
The event also gave free chest X-ray examination thru its partnership with URC-USAID’s TB Platform. Those who are identified as presumptive TB cases will be referred for sputum examination and final diagnosis through GeneXpert. Active TB cases will also be provided with free and full treatment.
Cayetano said one of the things the local government learned in this pandemic is to prioritize the improvement of the public health care system in the city.
“The LGU has always prioritized good health care for its citizens, now that we have the Universal Health Care (UHC) Law, we start to further strengthen our primary health care units. The silver lining (of this pandemic) is it will accelerate the standard of our public health care system, for most of the Filipino families rely on the public health care of local government units,” said Cayetano.
Cayetano said the city government joined hands with USAID in TB Detection, Care, and Treatment. “Building up health systems so everyone can get the services they need is key. This is one of the strategic actions that can help mitigate the impact of COVID-19.”
The city chief executive said the partnership further extended its reach in assisting people with TB through the recently launched “TB Contact Center” and “Tibay ng Dibdib Campaign” programs that aims to educate and help citizens about the disease and its importance in these times of pandemic.
Cayetano reiterates that inoculation is one of the most important keys to end the COVID-19 pandemic and the city government continues to strengthen its vaccination rollout.
As of May 5, the local government already vaccinated 36,507 individuals from the A1, A2, A3, and A4 categories of the COVID-19 Vaccination Priority List.
Taguig City has eight vaccination hubs - 4 mega vaccination hubs, 3 community vaccination hubs, and the partner private tertiary facility.