On Philippine lockdown anniversary, science group remembers over 12,800 lives lost due to COVID-19

March 15, 2021 - 7:04 PM
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Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipients hold a candle vigil at the San Jacinto Plaza in El Paso, Texas. (Reuters)

A science organization shared a graphic to remember the Filipinos who have died of COVID-19 since the 2020 outbreak.

In the graphic posted on March 15, Earth Shaker duplicated human-like dots or “persona icons” to represent the more than 12,000 individuals who have succumbed to COVID-19 as the country marks the community quarantine anniversary on March 15.

“12,829 plus lives lost in the Philippines due to COVID-19. Never forget,” read the text in the graphic.

The youth-led group hoped to humanize the deaths, rather than make them just part of the statistics.

“Para sa iba, sila ay kakarampot na mga numero lamang, pero ating tandaan na sa likod ng mga numerong ating nakikita ay mga taong may pangalan, pamilya, at mga pangarap,” said Earth Shaker.

“Katulad natin, sila rin ay maaaring tinatawag ring Tatay, Mama, Papa, Nanay, Dad, Mom, Anak, Kuya, Sis, Bro, Ate, Insan, Tito, Lolo, Lola, Tita, Apo, Ineng, Bunso, Pamangkin, Tiyo, Tiya, Bespren, Sir, Pads, Crush, Dok, Sweetie, Ineng, Classmate, Lod, Ma’am, Lider, Utoy, Mahal, at iba pang salita na binabanggit ng may pagmamahal,” it added.

Earth Shaker then left encouraging words to its followers. It urged them to continue observing health protocols and keep moving forward.

“Hindi pa tapos ang laban natin laban sa sakit na ito. Kaysa maging kampante at sabihing maayos ang lahat, ating tanggapin ang ating mga pagkakamali at gawin ang lahat upang mailigtas ang kapwa. Sumunod sa mga itinakdang health protocols at para sa ating mga pinuno, matutong sundin rin ang inyong mga itinakdang alituntunin,” it said.

The graphic was similar to the tribute of the New York Times to more than 500,000 individuals who died in the United States last February 23, 2021.

The prominent publication’s graphic, which was also laid out on its front page, featured dots that represented a life lost in the US due to the deadly disease.

Appreciation for the graphic

Earth Shaker’s followers on Twitter and Facebook appreciated the graphic to remember the lives lost due to COVID-19.

They also underscored that there were health workers and family members who have perished due to the disease.

“A YEAR AFTER….Remember the nurses, doctors, frontline workers, the grandparents, parents, daughters, sisters, sons, brothers, friends, co-workers who died from #COVID19PH,” one user said.

“It’s high time for Philippine news programs to do the same. They are not just statistics. We have not just lost thousands of lives, we lost relationships,” another said.

Some Facebook users, meanwhile, pointed out that the number of deaths could have been prevented.

“You forget that these deaths could have been prevented. The other ones you point out are as a result too of incompetence and lack of budget for our health sector and our scientists who work for us yet we choose to oversee their contributions,” commented one user.

The Department of Health reported an alarming 5,404 new infections on March 15, which was also the highest daily tally since August 14.

This brings the total number of cases to 626,893 with 53,479 active cases.

There are eight new deaths which brought the total to 12,837.

There are only 71 recoveries, which summed up to 560,577.