PRC-7 can’t act on Tuburan hospital staff incident if no complaint is filed
Cebu City, Philippines – The Professional Regulation Commission in Central Visayas (PRC-7) said it could only act on the Tuburan drug suspect incident if there is a complaint filed.
Gina Emperado, regional director of PRC-7, said that the agency cannot take any action against the staff of the Tuburan District Hospital who allegedly abandoned a drug suspect who was struggling for his life after being wounded in a shootout with the police if there is no complaint filed before their office.
“Kinahanglan nga naa gyuy mo-file sa PRC og complaint, then ang PRC mohatag nila og steps and procedures kabahin sa ilang reklamo gumikan adto nga hitabo,” Emperado said, adding that the agency cannot investigate in motu proprio, or without a formal request from another party.
If a complaint is filed, Emperado said that the agency’s hearing officer will immediately summon the respondents of the case to answer the complaint.
She said that if proven that there were violations, the PRC can suspend, cancel or revoke the licenses of these nurses.
“Pero depende na sab na sa hearing process ug sa proof of evidence nga ilang ma-present,” she added.
She added that PRC can suspend a professional license for up to a year if that person is proven to have violated the conduct of his/her profession.
The issue started when a video of a bloodied drug suspect later identified as 23-year-old Gembe Casas being ‘neglected’ in an emergency room went viral on social media.
Casas was shot in an anti-drug operation conducted by the Tuburan police on February 8, 2019.
In the video, which was taken by one of the hospital staff, Casas was seen fighting for his life on an emergency room bed. No one was seen helping him in the short one-minute and 20-second video. Casas later died in the hospital.
The video, which was reportedly taken on Friday evening, February 8, 2019, drew criticism online since it was posted.
Dr. Rene Catan of the Provincial Health Office (PHO) , however, said the video was taken “completely out of context.”
“He sustained multiple gunshot wounds and when he arrived at the ER, nitabang ang mga staff. Pero combative na man ang pasyente. Nag start na man siya og pangluwa so, niatras usa ang mga tawo. Diha na nagvideo nga makita nimo nga walay tawo,” said Catan.
“After the patient calmed down, nibalik ra sad ang mga medical personnel for the first aid. Nagstay pa to siya og almost one hour, awaiting transportation kay gitawgan na ang Sotto (Vicente Sotto Medical Center in Cebu City) ug ang Balamban. Unfortunately, kay daghan man kaayo siya og injuries, he died,” Catan added.
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR)-7 and PHO have already started their investigation of the incident.
While Catan said that the protocol in attending to patients was followed, he emphasized that taking a video of the patient and uploading it on social media was wrong, especially that it was a staff of the hospital who allegedly took the video.
Catan said that three personnel of the hospital who were allegedly involved in taking the video, and possibly passing the video to other devices, were already suspended since Saturday, February 9. /bmjo
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