Manila Standard : BBM marks unified QR code crucial

News & Interviews
25 August 2021

By Rey E. Requejo | Manila Standard

With no less than the Department of Health confirming community transmission of a far more vicious coronavirus mutated strain referred to as Delta variant, former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. underscored the need to come up with a unified QR code if only to guarantee fast and effective contact tracing.

Marcos stressed that QR codes will make the job of the contact tracers fast because a singular QR Code in place guarantees efficiency in locating and establishing the required details of suspected infected persons.

“Since there is already Delta variant community transmission, we must speed up the search for the contacts of those who test positive so that they can be immediately taken to hospitals or isolation facilities if they are infected. If we only have this national QR code, it will be easier for those infected to be found by contact tracers,” Marcos said in a statement.

“In the malls, the various stores have their own QR codes. In other provinces, they also have QR codes and they have found that contact tracing is easier,” he noted.

Besides, Marcos said the impending issuance of the VaxCertPH by the Department of Information and Communications Technology could somehow be useful as this meant compliance with the requirements of the World Health Organization.
The former senator finds it rather more logical to ramp up vaccination of the Filipinos, many of whom have yet to receive the first dose.

Nonetheless, Marcos urged the government to seriously consider the idea of providing special risk allowances to contact tracers, whom the former senator claimed are highly-exposed to risk of contamination in view of their job – to locate people who may have been infected by those who had tested positive for the deadly virus.

Marcos said: “Contact tracers, like health care workers, are also like soldiers fighting in a war. But despite the huge risk they face, they are overworked, underpaid and underequipped.

“So now it’s time to adjust the national budget for next year.

Hopefully, there will be an additional allocation for the SRA to include the contact tracers. Let’s not forget our frontliners who are
fighting against COVID-19 because the country’s healthcare system could collapse when they are overwhelmed.”