COVID-19 in Cebu: How Cebuanos are Fighting Back Against the Pandemic

COVID-19 in Cebu: How Cebuanos are Fighting Back Against the Pandemic

36 new COVID-19 cases with 1 new death were reported on April 29, 2020 in Cebu. The new cases include 2 from Lapu-Lapu City, bringing the city’s total to 34; 5 from Mandaue City, bringing the city’s total to 17; 18 from the CPDRC in Barangay Kalunasan; 2 from Cebu province; and 9 from Cebu City, bringing the city’s total to 555.

In total, the region now has a total of 636 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 631 of which are from Cebu province and its independent cities.


Cebu Backliners: Supporting COVID-19 Frontliners

With the recent spike of new COVID-19 cases in Cebu, frontliners are becoming more overwhelmed; many hospitals are understaffed and lack personal protective equipment (PPE).

In response to this, a passionate group of young Cebuanos created Cebu Backliners – a group that aims to support those who are in the frontlines against COVID-19. Cebu Backliners is composed of Claire Codilla, Michael Abello, and Jolu Escaño of ARCHcon Cebu; Barry Blanco of Zaku Cebu; and their partner abroad, Dhani Leadley.

According to Codilla’s statement to SunStar Cebu: “The term ‘Backliners’ came from the need to support our Frontliners. It was our way of saying ‘We have your back.’ Anyone can be a backliner—someone who donates and supports the campaign or creates any effort to help our frontliners in his own way. We couldn’t just sit down comfortably in our houses under quarantine when we knew there were and still are many dying every day”

The group’s idea for the fundraising program is (with Cebu’s current population of 922,611), if 2,642 Cebuanos donate Php 246, the group can provide frontliners with 100 test kits, 1,500 bodysuits, 5,000 face shields, and 10,000 surgical masks.


Laban Cebu: A Group Formed to Fight COVID-19

To help fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, the Cebu Filipino-Chinese Community formed a group known as Laban Cebu. The group donated Php 2 million-worth of medical supplies – including face masks, alcohol, and other protective gear – to the frontliners in the hospitals and cities of Lapu-Lapu, Mandaue, and Cebu City. Moreover, the group has set up two 40-foot container vans at Block 27 at the North Reclamation Area, where a 200-bed capacity quarantine center is being constructed.


PCSO Donates Php 30 Million to Aid Cebu City Hospital

The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) has donated PHP30 million to the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center Sub-National Laboratory (VSMMC SNL) in an effort to help against the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will be used to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE) and other equipment required to run the sub-national laboratory.

In a statement, PCSO-Cebu Manager Glen Jesus Rada says, “Initially, the PHP30-million fund the PCSO turned over to the VSMMC SNL will be used for the protection of our front-liners in the laboratory. The hospital’s chief finance officer made a follow up with our social worker for the deposit of the fund as they want to use it for the purchase of necessary equipment like PPE.” He also said that the hospital can use the fund to pay for the bills of COVID-19 patients.

Rada also added, “We recommended to our central office to give financial assistance to provincial hospitals. But so far, the PCSO finds it urgent to fund the anti-Covid-19 program of the VSMMC.”


The Takeaway

Amid all the fear and confusion that the COVID-19 pandemic has wrecked across Cebu, hearing stories like those of Cebu Backliners and the initiative taken by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) is really heartwarming. It goes to show that Cebuanos are fighting this pandemic together.


Cebu Daily News

Yahoo PH

Philippine Star

Philippine News Agency 

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