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The Ipilan Nickel Corporation (INC) recently held a 5-day training on first aid for barangay health workers in Brooke’s Point.

Alex Arabis, INC officer-in-charge resident mine manager and community relations manager, said that providing training to respond to first aid needs will help elevate health workers’ skills, particularly at the barangay level.

From August 16 to 20, people were taught standard first aid and basic life support-cardiopulmonary resuscitation (BLS-CPR) using an automated external defibrillator (AED).

“They’re not yet fully equipped, aware lang sila but not really capacitated. Itong ginagawa natin, we partner with different government agencies—for the proper training na kakailanganin and will be given certificates—it is really a profession, not just a simple barangay health worker performing community work,” he said.

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The Social Development and Management Program (SDMP) and the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) worked together to put on the event.

Barangay Councilor Revicca Balmonte of Ipilan said the training was helpful in preparing their community for health emergencies.

“Malaking tulong ito sa aming barangay lalo na kapag sa panahon na may nadidisgrasya, makakatulong din kami. Kailangan talaga lahat kami sa barangay ay matutunan ang unang lunas na kinakailangan sa komunidad—para maisalba pa ang buhay ng isang tao,” she said.

The participating barangay workers from Maasin, Ipilan, Mambalot, and Calasaguen are expected to learn first aid, ways of transferring the patients from stretcher to ambulance, basic life support, and how to use an AED.

According to Wilson Sakirin, chapter service representative for safety services, PRC is also working to increase the number of people who are familiar with standard first aid and basic life support.

“Ang ating mga BHW, sila ‘yong laging namo-mobilize kapag may mga dadalhin sa ospital, sila ‘yong hinihingian ng tulong. Malaking tulong ito sa awareness at makapag-disseminate sila sa community,” he said.

“Sana maparami ang tulad nito, ang objective ni Red Cross, bawat pamilya ay meron man lang mag-first aid at basic life support kasi walang ibang tutulong kung hihingi sila ng tulong kung hindi sila muna. Kasi sila ‘yong first responder talaga sa community,” he added.

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is one of the senior reporters of Palawan News. She covers agriculture, business, and different feature stories. Her interests are collecting empty bottles, aesthetic earrings, and anything that is color yellow.