The U.S. Civil-Military Support Element-Philippines (CMSE-PHL) recently collaborated with Philippine partner groups to offer free medical and dental care to more than 500 residents affected by Typhoon Odette in Barangay Port Barton, San Vicente municipality in Palawan.
CMSE-PHL provided over 1,000 kilos of medical and dental supplies, valued at over P700,000 ($14,000), in collaboration with local government and military units to support Palawan province’s ongoing efforts to assist communities like Port Barton and expand services in all barangays of the province.
CMSE-PHL partnered with the Special Operations Group of the Coast Guard District Palawan (CGDPal), Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), San Vicente LGU, San Vicente Rural Health Unit, 33rd Marine Company of the Marine Battalion Landing Team 3, the Department of Health (DOH) local office, and the Philippine Dental Association (PDA)-Palawan Chapter to make the project possible.
In December 2021, Port Barton recorded nearly P303 million ($5.8 million) in property damage due to Typhoon Odette, the U.S. Embassy said in a statement Friday, March 18.
“The typhoon was an immense challenge for our men and women on the front lines in the PCG, from conducting search and rescue missions to transporting aid to different communities in Palawan,” said Lt. Jonathan Morante, the commanding officer of the PCG Special Operations Group.
“We are proud to be able to help our district and our people rebuild together, and we thank our U.S. partners for helping us support the people of Palawan,” he added.
While American soldiers provided medical and dental supplies, medics of the Marines and DOH Palawan provided free on-site consultations and treatments to the people of Barangay Port Barton and administered vaccines against COVID-19.
Dentists from the PDA-Palawan Chapter provided free treatment and hygiene kits to children. Medical supplies were also donated to the San Vicente municipal DOH.
“It’s amazing to see the resilience of the people of Palawan, and their commitment to serving their communities even under the toughest of circumstances,” said Sgt. 1st Class Linton Pitluga, a U.S. Army medic with CMSE-PHL.
“It’s an honor to be able to work with our partners and be a small part of this inspiring effort to rebuild,” he added.