DOH ready to welcome new, still unnamed Health chief

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 29) — As the country welcomes a new administration, the Department of Health says it is ready to usher in its new secretary even as no one has yet been named as a nominee for the post.

"Hindi kailangang mag-alala ang ating bagong Secretary of Health, whoever will be appointed, dahil ang Kagawaran ng Kalusugan, kami na mga officials ng Department of Health have already prepared this transition," Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said at the Laging Handa briefing on Wednesday.

[Translation: The new Secretary of Health, whoever will be appointed, should not worry because the officials of the Department of Health have prepared this transition.]

However, she also said it would be helpful if they will meet the new Health chief as soon as possible.

"Need not worry, but it would also be advantageous to all of us kung makikilala na namin siya at makakusap bago mag-July 1 [if we can meet and talk to the new Health Secretary before July 1]."

Vergeire ensured a transition plan had been drafted with a list of briefers to be endorsed to the new DOH head.

At a briefing on Wednesday afternoon, incoming press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles shared the reason why there is still no DOH Secretary appointee right on the eve of a new administration.

"Sinusuri pa nila. As you know, nagtalaga tayo ng applications process at tsaka mayroong proseso para sa pag-eevaluate," she said. "Dahil nga, sabi niyo, mahalaga yung posisyon na ito, hindi pwedeng madaliin yung proseso."

[Translation: They are going over it. As you know, we set an applications process and there is an evaluation process. Because this position is specially important, we cannot afford to rush things up.]