The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) has created an online portal as part of a program to help expedite the return of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) in quarantine facilities to their respective hometowns.
“Uwian Na”, according to OWWA Administrator Hans Leo Cacdac, is a registration system that will transport OFWs back home for those who are negative in the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test results and are in OWWA quarantine facilities.
Returning Home? Check out OWWA’s ‘Uwian Na’ Online Portal for OFWs
According to National Task Force (NTF) on COVID-19 chief implementer and presidential adviser on the peace process Carlito Galvez Jr., an estimated 42,000 overseas Filipino workers are expected to return home in the next two months and the government has expressed concern over how to accommodate the OFWs for the mandatory 14-day quarantine intended to curb the coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19.
With safety restrictions set in place, this number is impossible to contain in a single facility for the prescribed duration of the quarantine period of 14 days for each OFW.
The “Uwian Na” portal serves the purpose of expediting the return process, explained Cacdac, as shared in a report by the Manila Bulletin.
Earlier, there have been complaints from some repatriated OFWs of being unable to leave the quarantine facilities despite already testing negative for COVID-19 and having completed the 14-day mandatory quarantine period.
Through the “Uwian Na” portal, OWWA will be able to organize the OFWs into different batches depending on their destinations, explained Cacdac.
“This is so we can group OFWs depending on their destination so that the OWWA can organize the booking or charter of flights, and also this is so authorities know in which hotel OFWs will be fetched,” he added.
To use the online portal, returning OFWs must register and meet both of the following qualifications:
- The OFW must be included in the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) list of OFW repatriates with RT-PCR Negative Results.
- The OFW must be staying in a hotel provided by OWWA.
Those who meet these terms must fill out the registration form on the website.
Once successfully registered, the OFW will then receive an acknowledgment email from OWWA confirming their registration, with instructions regarding their travel arrangements.
The government is doing its best to actively manage the situation of returning OFWs because according to Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr., any oversight regarding this could trigger the second wave of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infections in the country.
There are more than 8,000 repatriated OFWs presently quarantined in OWWA-run facilities.