On World Water Day, Akbayan Partylist Representative Tom Villarin demanded Manila Water to pay PHP 4.1 million to the Department of Health (DOH) over issues in health centers arising from the water crisis cited in the agency's report.

"Manila Water should be taught a lesson: when you cause a crisis, you should pay for it," the partylist solon said.

Citing data obtained from the Department of Health (DOH), Villarin said that 6 public hospital hospitals suffered total losses of P 4.116 M at the height of the water crisis.

He said that from March 8-18, the Rizal Medical Center, Quirino Memorial Medical Center, National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI), National Center for Mental Health, East Avenue Medical Center and the Amang Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center sustained added operational costs amounting to P 1.372 M.

Meanwhile, from March 12-18, the Rizal Medical Center and the NKTI incurred etimated revenue losses of P 630,000 and P 1.750 M, respectively, or a total of P 2.380 M as a result of limiting patients due to the limited water supply.

"The water crisis almost became a health crisis because of Manila Water's negligence. Health centers are turning down patients and people are drinking and using unsafe water supply," Villarin added.

Health experts pose alarm on dangerous diseases in areas where there is water shortage. Dengue cases could rise further in improper waste storages. Diseases like diarrhea, cholera and dysentery could spread quickly among children in poor communities when families turn to unsafe water, Akbayan Partylist noted.

"The worst disease outbreak could have happened due to Manila Water's negligence. Manila Water's next step should be to reimburse public hospitals for their losses," Villarin ended. ###