OFW wakes up from coma after stroke in HK

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Prince of Wales hospital (Photo: Google Maps)

She received an early birthday gift.

A 57-year-old Filipino domestic worker who is celebrating her birthday on August 27 woke up from a coma and is now recovering after she suffered a stroke last month, a consulate official said this morning (August 8).

Welfare Attache Virsie Tamayao said she visited yesterday the Filipina worker, who is now out of the intensive care unit (ICU) of the Prince of Wales Hospital in Shatin.

“If before it seemed hopeless, now it’s different. She is now recovering from her stroke,” Tamayao said in an interview.

“Her daughter and mother are also here to be by her side and offer support,” she added.

Tamayao said the Philippine Overseas Labour Office received a report on July 14 that the worker was brought to Prince of Wales after she had a “brain stroke.”

“She was in a coma and had these wires and an NGT (nasogastric tube for her food). Now, she’s out of the ICU,” Tamayao said.

She said a Filipino doctor from St. Luke’s Hospital in the Philippines who is currently visiting Prince of Wales also looked after the helper.

“I asked her, ‘Oh, how are you?’ and she was smiling. You could see that her countenance had changed and she is now cheerful,” Tamayao said.

She said the worker’s mother and daughter, who are from Caloocan City, also made sure to visit her twice a day at the hospital.

“At first, she did not immediately recognize them and asked about her employer and alaga (ward) but she eventually did,” Tamayao said, adding that

She urged Filipino domestic workers in Hong Kong to take good care of their health and, for those who are not feeling well, to immediately get medical assistance.

“Foreign domestic workers should have medical insurance. They can have a medical check-up and later show the receipt to their employer,” Tamayao said.

Four other Filipino domestic workers died in the last three weeks here in Hong Kong, with two of them suffering a stroke. The two others were believed to have died due to a heart attack.

According to data from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), stroke was the top cause of illness of OFWs repatriated from HK from 2014 to 2017.

Stroke victims comprised 36 percent of OFWs repatriated back to the Philippines, while those with cancer comprised 27 percent. The other illnesses reported were tuberculosis/ lung problems (13 percent), mild depression (21 percent), and fracture/ spinal problems (three percent), according to OWWA.

Labor Attache Nida Romulo said she would push for foreign domestic workers in HK to have mandatory annual check-ups.

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