By now, we’ve fully recognized the Tulfos as everyone’s guilty pleasure: from Ben’s pronounced accent when he’s speaking in English, to Erwin’s snappy comebacks, to Raffy’s memetastic cases; love them or hate them, they are larger-than-life characters we can’t help but be slightly bemused at, Wanda Tulfo-Teo and millions and millions in DOT funds wasted notwithstanding.
That being said, over the years, we seem to have mostly forgotten about the Tulfo who practically started it all: Mon, who often seems like a completely different entity from his other three brothers, despite making the Tulfo family name the go-to for machismo public service.
Well, sometime last week, Mon Tulfo figured his way back into relevance when his driver ran over a kid, which he used as leverage to “expose” PGH and how “inattentive” they were to the plight of the poor kid, never mind the fact that PGH was a long way from where the accident actually happened.
Mon Tulfo practically waved a camera around in the faces of the people at PGH, as if he completely forgot what happened to him the last time he did that very thing.
With that in mind, let’s look at 8 reasons why this latest Tulfo misadventure was mind-blowingly reckless and dangerous not just to the medical profession, but to future patients in emergency rooms faced with similar situations.
He has zero idea what the protocol in hospitals is
Ever heard of the concept of triage? Long story short, it’s the process by which hospitals determine who gets prioritized in the middle of an emergency room. Unlike other establishments, emergency rooms don’t operate via first-come, first-serve. Instead, they determine who needs medical attention the most, and deal with them first, working their way from the most serious of cases (like, say, someone who has an axe stuck in their head) to the least pressing of matters (like, say, someone who has a cold). And while running a kid over sounds serious, we’re talking about the PGH here, where hundreds, if not thousands of emergencies end up at their doorstep every single day, even when they have been operating at limited capacity since June 1 this year.
He could have brought the kid to a nearer hospital
It begs the question: why PGH? Is it the only hospital he knows? Is he unaware of any other hospitals nearby that he could have taken the kid to instead? The fact is, running the kid over is technically his driver’s fault, so as concerned as he is for the kid, it’s pretty clear that it’s in his best interests to make sure the kid gets the best possible care in the soonest possible time. So why didn’t he do that?
He has no idea what medical practitioners go through
People assume that once you’re a doctor, you’re rolling in so much money. Unfortunately, even if we assumed that were true, that still doesn’t protect these doctors from working 36-hour shifts at a time. If you catch them dozing off,as so many patients have in their attempts at shaming these “lazy” doctors, you might be surprised to discover that doctors are humans, too, and they are clearly not built for 36 hours straight of non-stop medical action. Most of us who work a relatively cushy job in the office can’t even imagine the horror of going 30 minutes beyond the nine hours we’re normally required in the office. What more someone who’s required to do 36 hours?
He ignores the Data Privacy Act flagrantly
Legal experts have affirmed that the PGH is not a public place, making it protected under the Data Privacy Act. This means that without the express consent of the people caught on camera, Mon Tulfo is breaking the law as he waves his camera around, capturing all the insanity going on in an E.R. envrinoment in one of the busiest hospitals in the country.
He is complaining about people doing their job
If you listen to his commentary during the video’s runtime, he makes it a point to criticize that “parang palengke ang ER dito,” as if chaos in a busy hospital’s emergency room is something that is both shocking and wrong. The fact is, yes, the ER is buzzing with activity precisely because they’re doing their job, and if you think they’re not because the patient you’re with is not being addressed in what you believe is a timely manner, please refer back to first point in this list. It’s why we put that point up there first.
He was making life harder for everyone in the hospital – including the other patients
Instead of moving things along sooner, Mon Tulfo’s stunt obviously caused a lot of delays and headaches for everyone involved. Imagine that: while he’s ranting and keeping some doctors occupied from getting to where they should be going because he’s accosting them, the patient waiting for that very doctor could be gasping for air at that very moment, but tough luck for him, because Mon Tulfo. That is beyond inconsiderate, and unconscionable.
His tirade reinforces misconceptions about the Philippine healthcare system
No, the doctors in these public hospitals are not overpaid, lazy, entitled professionals: they’re doctors who are going through 36-hour shifts, doing everything they can just so they can still perform their duties despite it not being something the human body is designed for.
Unfortunately, thanks to Mon Tulfo’s tirade, the millions of people who are influenced by him now think that when they’re in an emergency room, if the medical professionals are not addressing them first, then these practitioners are being “negligent” at doing their jobs.
He’s barking up the wrong tree
With underpaid and overworked medical practitioners (especially nurses) running around local hospitals and Mon Tulfo in possession of such a powerful platform where he could potentially influence the course of Philippine medical care, Mr. Tulfo instead squanders this opportunity by lambasting PGH, when he should be asking why one of the busiest hospitals in the entire country is forced to not operate at full capacity.
For starters, he could maybe ask if enough budget is being given to these hospitals to properly operate. If he did, then he would have discovered that instead of adding more budget to the DOH, the government is reducing the budget by a staggering 35 Billion Pesos for next year. Seriously? Let’s not even talk about how much money the PCOO is getting in contrast, or that P60M DOT ad placement: why are we shortchanging one of the most important functions of the government like this?
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