By Mario Casayuran
As chairman of the Senate health committee, neophyte Senator Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go said on Monday his committee would try to help the medical profession in turning out specialists in biliary atresia.
Go issued the statement after he and President Duterte helped in sending two babies to India to undergo liver transplant.
Biliary atresia is a rare disease of the liver and bile ducts that occurs in infants. Given the complications attributed to the disease, the operation needed to address it is not readily available in the country.
“Magpaaral tayo ng mga doctors para maging specialists po rito. Maraming cases po ng liver problems na kailangan sila (We will help doctors become specialists in biliary atresia due to a high number of cases in the country),” Go said.
The President had earlier offered assistance to an Army soldier’s baby daughter, Eren Arabella Crisologo from Butuan City, and another child from Cebu, Dionifer Zephaniah Itao.
Go said he and the President first met baby Eren when they visited wounded soldiers in a hospital in Cagayan de Oro City last March, while baby Dionifer was presented to Go in one of his visits to fire victims in Cebu early this year.
Last June, both babies Eren and Dionifer left for India with their parents for the needed medical operation at Apollo Hospital.
Despite efforts in providing the best and world-class medical attention, 11-month old Eren did not survive the complications of the operation.
The Crisologo family has returned to the country and President offered to shoulder the burial and transportation expenses.
Baby Eren’s parents, Erne Crisologo, a soldier, and Charibel Crisologo, a teacher, thanked President Duterte and Senator Go.
Still in grief, they went to Davao City to meet the President and Sen. Go to thank them before returning to Butuan City.
Meanwhile, baby Dionifer is still in India undergoing more tests in preparation for the procedure.
Go said the success story of four-year-old baby Xia Kazumi Ngo of Taguig which he met during a visit to Taguig City last year is proof that there is hope for those diagnosed with biliary atresia. Baby Xia is now in a healthier state after undergoing a medical procedure in India early this year.
“Lahat ng batang may malalang sakit at kumplikado lumapit lang sa Pangulo lalo anak ng sundalo, tutulungan namin (Every child who is suffering from a serious illness, especially the children of soldiers, just approach the President and we will help you),” he added. (with a report from Argyll Cyrus B. Geducos)