by Ian Kay Faa, Romblon News/PR | Monday, 30 May 2016
Department of Health (DOH) – MIMAROPA (Oriental/Occidental Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, Palawan) together with the Philippine Coast Guard Palawan District (PCG) successfully completed the training of 17 aquatic personnel during the fourth batch of DOH Water Search and Rescue Training conducted from May 23-27, 2016 in Coron, Palawan.
“The skills and knowledge of our aquatic personnel in providing emergency response must be strengthened in order for them to provide a better understanding on how to properly manage a possible victim prior to and upon arrival of the responding professional rescue authorities,” Regional Director Eduardo C. Janairo stated.
“This is also to lessen the threats on rescuers during a rescue in still waters, surf, urban flood, or rivers which requires the proper knowledge and the ability to survive in each situation,” he emphasized.
The fourth batch of DOH trainees includes 10 boatmen, 6 resort staff and a lone PNP officer. Age of trainees range from 17-47 years old. During the 5-day training, trainees were taught lessons on basic lifesaving techniques and leadership. There were 20 candidates who attended the training with 3 participants who failed.
According to the records of the PCG from March 16, 2015 – May 27, 2016, there are now a total of 336 WASAR Trained personnel in Palawan, 127 of these were funded by the DOH and 209 by LGUs.
DOH-MIMAROPA aims to train at least 500 aquatic personnel in the whole region. “The objective is to ensure safety of the public who frequents resorts and beaches,” Janairo added.
WASAR Training is one of the priority component of the “Health in Tourism Program” of DOH-MIMAROPA launched on March 24, 2015 in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan. Among the eight components includes vermin control and disinfection, cleanliness in ports and vessels, installation of health signage in strategic places, creating a network of medical clinics, training of lifeguards and emergency responders, provision of buoys, lifeguard towers or posts, water testing for bacteriological and minerals/solutes and proper sewerage disposals.
Water Search and Rescue (WASAR) training is the search for and provision of aid to people who are in distress or imminent danger. Participants are trained on the proper way of water entry, types of swimming, lifesaving techniques, group survival, water evolution and knot tying. The PCG conducted a one-day briefing and orientation on water safety and life-saving before the beginning of the training.