Appreciation hour: Public urged to join the nation’s 2-minute-clap for COVID-19 frontliners

March 16, 2020 - 4:44 PM
A health worker uses a thermal scanner to check a man's temperature at a checkpoint placed amidst the lockdown of the country's capital to contain the spread of coronavirus, in the outskirts of Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines, March 15, 2020. (Reuters/Eloisa Lopez)

A nationwide appreciation hour for our medical heroes is slated Monday afternoon.

For two minutes, the public is asked to go out of their balcony, window, rooftop at 5 p.m. and show appreciation and gratitude to our health professionals by applauding “as loud as you can.”

This call for nationwide applause for COVID-19 frontliners was indicated in a social card that circulated online through Facebook, Twitter, other social media platforms and group chats on Sunday.

It was not clear who initiated the call but the social media card bears the hashtag #FrontlinersPH.

“We want them to hear it from their hospitals and ERs while they save lives and keep us all safe,” the social media card read.

“Doctors, nurses, ER and medical staff deserve our recognition and support. Please spread the word and send this message…Let them hear us support them in this time of need,” it also said.

Various personalities followed suit and are also urging fellow Filipinos to join in the two-minute-applause for our health workers.

A number of media outlets and social media pages also shared the social media card and asked the public to pay homage to our medical heroes.

On Sunday, the BBC reported that “residents in Spain and Italy have shown their gratitude to health personnel on the coronavirus frontline by applauding from their windows.”

“The nationwide events were coordinated in the locked-down countries through social media,” the BBC said.

According to a report from Greekreporter, the spontaneous gesture of gratitude came after Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez delivered a televised address to the nation informing them that everyone would be confined to their homes except to make short trips to buy supplies.

A similar social media message spread in Greece encouraging them to show their gratitude to health personnel on the coronavirus frontline by applauding from their balconies.

Wife of Greece Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, Mareva Grabowski-Mitsotaki, no less, shared the call for applause.

“We applaud for five minutes the people who are fighting for us. The health personnel. We want our applause to be heard at every hospital so they can take courage for the days to come,” a social media message spreading across the Greek nation read.

President Rodrigo Duterte was recently criticized for failing to recognize the health workers who are in the frontlines of the battle against the fatal coronavirus in his hour-long nation address.

READ: Duterte failed to acknowledge ‘real heroes’ in last night’s COVID-19 address

He raised the alert level over COVID-19 to the highest level—Code Red Sublevel 2. The president also placed National Capital Region under community quarantine and suspension of classes until April 14, 2020.

In view of this several online initiatives were made to acknowledge the efforts of the health workers, including meal donations from restaurants, non-governmental organizations and advocates.