ILIGAN CITY (PIA)–Upon confirming that all N95 and N98 disposable face masks were already sold out from Aguinaldo to Tubod and Palao to Tibanga along with the depleted supply of ethyl alcohol, the Local Price Coordinating Council (LPCC) here stops the public from panic buying especially when one does not have any respiratory symptom, February 3.
Led by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the LPCC also learned that there is a possible price increase in all sizes of alcohol; a P2 increase if the supplies are from Cagayan de Oro City and P5 if they are bought from Davao City.
Medical supplies such as N95, disposable face masks, ethyl alcohol, sterile gloves, nebulizer, nebulizer kit, and oxygen cannula are all sold within the suggested retail price (SRP). Though there are few pharmacies which go beyond the SRP, LPCC said it is prevalent for these pharmacies attached to hospitals to have a higher price compared to independent pharmacies since their brands differ.
LPCC also noted that prior to 2019-Novel Coronavirus (2019-NCoV) scare, there was almost a shortage of face mask supply throughout the country because of the Taal Volcano eruption, January 12. While monitoring 44 pharmacies in the said areas, some pharmacy staff reported that they get their face mask supplies from Manila-based suppliers and these suppliers prioritized the distribution in Luzon.
“If grabe jud ang increase, pwede ra na magtawag na pud ta ug emergency meeting and monitoring, mag-another round na pud ta ug monitoring and kung na’y mulapas sa SRP i-close monitor jud nato sila,” LPCC-Iligan Head Elvira Rudiblado said.
(If there is a serious increase in prices, we can immediately call for an emergency meeting and monitoring. We can have another round of monitoring and if there are supplies sold that exceed the SRP, we will closely monitor them)
To refrain from purchasing costly supplies, LPCC encourages the public to regularly wash their hands, avoid large crowds, cover mouth when coughing or sneezing, and consult a doctor when they experience the 2019-NCoV symptoms especially if they have traveled from Wuhan, China.
The only people who should be wearing masks are those who have respiratory symptoms (cough and difficulty in breathing), care providers to individuals with respiratory symptoms, and health workers attending to individuals with respiratory symptoms,” Rudiblado said.
The LPCC-Iligan assures to protect the rights of the consumers and to closely monitor the pharmacies if the scare of the people towards 2019-NCoV prevails. (RTP/PIA10)