Soldiers undergo training to help in COVID-19 crisis

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 11) — Soldiers with prior medical background have been tapped to help in the government's fight against COVID-19.

A statement from the Philippine Army's 4th Infantry Division said 186 troopers underwent special training to combat the spread of the disease, including Department of Health protocols and measures.

"We are one with the people of Northern Mindanao and Caraga regions in this fight against COVID-19. Rest assured of our troops' unwavering commitment and support to the local government units and agencies through the Northern Mindanao Task Force for COVID-19. We are all in this together and we will heal as one,” MGen Franco Nemesio Gacal, commander of the division based in Cagayan de Oro City, said.

The statement said the soldiers will become part of the unit's Marshalls and Trainers on COVID-19 (MTC-19) and will help ensure that military personnel are observing DOH guidelines. They will also act as trainers to soldiers in COVID-19-related efforts and as health advisers to their respective commanders.

Meanwhile, some 80 soldiers in Bukidnon have undergone training with the Bukidnon Provincial Medical Center (BPMC) to learn how to respond to events in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Marlah Samson, Health Emergency Staff Operations officer of the BPMC, said soldiers should be able to reinforce health workers, especially in transporting patients.