Equipping frontliners on patient welfare

Pacifico Eric Calderon, Department Chair, St Luke’s Medical Center | Awardee, Australia Awards Scholarships

2020 Calderon Pacifico Photo.jpgEquipping frontliners on patient welfare

Pacifico Eric Calderon
Australia Awards Scholarship 2019
Master of Bioetchics
University of Sydney
Department Chair, St Luke’s Medical Center

Australia Awards alumnus Pacifico Eric “Cocoy” Calderon, a physician and bioethicist at the St Luke's Medical Center, is hosting a series of webinars that provide medical ethics support to health care providers during the pandemic. His initiative was inspired by his observations on how the public heavily relies on medical professionals during this unprecedented time. He also urges the public to be critical of health information they receive and to protect themselves as the 'real' frontliners at home.

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I give industry-hosted webinars of nationwide reach, and these conversations underscore the most common ethical issues care providers encounter in the workplace. At the same time, my webinars provide a space for attendees to reflect on our narratives as physicians and the professional exhortations to them to uphold the primacy of patient welfare. Informed by my background and experience in medical bioethics, my lectures analyse the extent of the duty of physicians to ethically provide care during this pandemic, while considering the physical and moral harms they face in the workplace.

During this community quarantine, I have tried to work while at home, ministering health to people via telemedicine. At the same time, my capacities and inabilities have fueled my call to arms for solidarity, particularly requesting the general public to be critical of health information they receive and to protect themselves as the 'real' frontliners at home.

The pandemic has highlighted that we, Filipinos, can unite in terms of rejecting social oppression by feeding the hungry, uplifting up the low-spirited, defending our rights, and nurturing our senses of creativity and generosity during a crisis. Our many methods of bayanihan reinforce our culture and values where we come to realise that our national sense of self-preservation rests on our collective care for one another.

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