FDHs discover ‘silent killer’ after free medical check-ups at POLO

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The Philippine Overseas Labor Office in Wan Chai


AROUND 1,400 overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in Hong Kong availed of the free medical check-ups at the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Wan Chai and many of them were surprised to discover that they had high blood pressure.

Assistant Labor Attache Angelica Sunga said that a total of 1,384 OFWs availed of the free blood pressure and blood sugar tests at the POLO in Wan Chai from Nov. 4 up to Nov. 28.

She added that there were 41 who were hypertensive or those who had a blood pressure of more than 170 over 100.

“They did not have any symptoms. They did not feel dizzy or have any neck pain. They were surprised to find out that their blood pressure was that high,” Sunga said.

“That is why high blood pressure is known as the ‘silent killer,’” she added.

Sunga said they asked these OFWs to sit down and relax first before taking another blood pressure reading but many retained their high blood pressure results.

She said they urged them to go to the hospital or to a Chinese-Filipino doctor who has her practice in Wan Chai.

“We asked if they needed an ambulance but they said they felt okay. What we do is we insist that they see a doctor,” Sunga said.

Sunga and POLO staff member Joszoa Villa, both nurses, conduct the BP and blood glucose tests on weekdays.

Those who will take the blood glucose tests are advised to go on a fast for eight hours before taking the tests so that the results are accurate.

The POLO is also planning to buy medical gadgets that would be able to measure one’s uric acid and cholesterol levels.

Labor Attache Jalilo Dela Torre initiated the free medical check-ups due to the increasing number of OFWs who are getting sick in Hong Kong. The check-ups are available daily except on Fridays at the POLO, which is located on the 18th Floor of Mass Mutual Tower, 33 Lockhart Road, Wan Chai.

The consulate is also asking the Hong Kong government to require mandatory health exams for foreign domestic workers.

On Nov. 25, a 32-year-old Filipino domestic worker from Bnguet died in Tseung Kwan O just two weeks after doctors discovered that she had end-stage colon cancer.