Deaths among Hong Kong-based Pinoys rise in 2017
MORE Filipinos died in Hong Kong in 2017 compared to the previous year, data from the Philippine Consulate General showed.
Attache Joel Oronan told Hong Kong News on Jan. 9 that as of the January to September 2017 period, 62 cases of deaths of Filipino nationals were reported to the PCG, about the same number of deaths – 64 – reported in 2016.
“For the fourth quarter of the year, I think there would be at least 17 cases of deaths so there would be more cases of death of Filipino nationals in Hong Kong in 2017,” Oronan said.
The leading cause of death was stroke, he added.
“Especially during winter, we notice a spike in the number of deaths among Filipinos and I think it must be because of what they eat during the season,” Oronan said.
This was the reason, he added, why the consulate has been seeking a mandatory annual check up for Filipino household service workers.
In a meeting with then Consul General Bernardita Catalla and Hong Kong Labour officials led by Secretary Dr. Law Chi-kwong on Aug. 30, the mandatory annual check up was among the requests made by Philippine officials to Hong Kong officials.
“There was an agreement that domestic helpers should be protected and welfare should be further improved,” Catalla had said.
She added that she asked that an initiative be taken so Filipino domestic workers could have an annual medical checkup.
“I noticed that in recent months, there was a higher number of deaths among Filipino domestic workers. They sleep at night, the following day, they don’t wake up and the employer opens the bedroom and sees the worker lying dead and not breathing.
“I asked them to consider a [system] so that workers could go through annual medical check up. The long working hours could lead to some natural causes of death,” she said.
Catalla added that if the employer and the helper were aware of the health condition of the helper, the illness could be treated.