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‘Perhaps, we can save others from dying’ – Pablo John
By: Sugbo News | Published Friday, September 18, 2020
Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and younger brother, Deputy Speaker Pablo John Garcia in a press conference, raised questions on the medical interventions employed on their brothers. (Tonee Despojo)

They recovered from Covid and were ready to go home, so… WHY?

This was the question raised by Governor Gwendolyn Garcia and Deputy Speaker Pablo John Garcia on the deaths of their brothers, Barili Mayor Marlon Garcia and former Dumanjug Mayor Nelson Garcia.  

“If their deaths are to have any meaning, then let’s ask the questions so that the lessons we’ll learn from these questions may perhaps save other people’s lives. We cannot bring back our brothers to life, but perhaps we can save others from dying,” Pablo John said in a conference with the press.

“I am not here as congressman or deputy speaker. Gwen is not here as governor. We are just here as brother and sister asking why? Ngano man?” he added.

Marlon and Nelson recovered from Covid and had tested negative around the third week of August. However, last September 1, Nelson died of cardiopulmonary arrest secondary to probable massive pulmonary embolism. Days later on September 6, Marlon died of septic shock secondary to catheter-related blood stream infection and ventilator-associated pneumonia.

With this, it would seem that the immediate causes of both their deaths were the post-Covid treatment and medical interventions.

“It’s very clear, especially with the case of Mayor Marlon, that the sepsis was caused by catheter and pneumonia induced by the ventilator,” the deputy speaker explained.

Covid-19 and its consequences have been shown in the past to be a highly treatable disease, he pointed out. Their brothers were not at the age that’s in critical danger of dying from the effects of Covid. In fact, they did recover from Covid.

Like his two brothers, Pablo John, too was positive of Covid. The same was true for Marlon’s son and daughter-in-law, but the three of them decided not to go to the hospital. They chose home isolation for 14 days, took Department of Health (DOH)-approved medications, did steam inhalation, and they recovered. Nelson had wanted to take the same medicines that Pablo John was taking, but the hospital did not allow this.

About 17 days after Marlon was admitted, the mayor sent messages and selfie photo saying he was okay and wanted to go home, and was willing to sign a waiver. But the doctors did not allow him to be discharged. The family sought a conference with the team of doctors on this but one doctor said he was busy, while another will not attend without his colleague. So the family placed a call to one doctor who admitted that the patients no longer had Covid and were to be moved out of the Covid ICU to another ICU, narrated the governor. They expressed concern on the state of ICUs where bacteria are mostly drug-resistant, and their aunt who is a practicing doctor even asked if the ventilator was properly cleaned.

“As of now, we are asking questions. And yes, we will ask experts to weigh-in… There is a pattern,” he said, citing a similar case in the death of Liloan Councilor Leo Pilapil who was just also laid to rest after one month of same strategy, same treatment, and same interventions in the same hospital.

“They died not from COVID or pneumonia but because of the bacteria that they got from the hospital… It would have been more prudent not to put them in highly infectious environment," Pablo John said.