A 62-year old undocumented overseas Filipino worker (OFW) fears of being thrown in jail over mounting hospital bills after she underwent an angioplasty, a surgical repair or unblocking of coronary artery, according to migrant rights group Migrante-Middle East (M-ME).
The elderly OFW who sought assistance from Migrante affiliate was identified as Feliza Flores Duran. She revealed that she came from Project 8, Quezon City.
“Nanay Feliza was admitted November 28, Saturday, at a hospital in Jeddah and immediately underwent an angioplasty,” said Mr. Nick Y. Macalino, chairperson of Migrante-Rabigh, Saudi Arabia.
Nanay Feliza sought Migrante’s assistance as she has already incurred 70,000 Saudi rials (roughly equivalent to Php 850,000) due to her operation, medicines, and other hospital bills.
“I have talked to Nanay Feliza over the phone yesterday afternoon. She was really worried after being told by hospital staff that she will be sent to jail if she failed to pay her bills,” said M-ME regional coordinator John Leonard Monterona.
Monterona confirmed that Mr. Macalino of Migrante-Rabigh is now coordinating with the PH consulate Assistance to the Nationals section (ANS) so that the latter can provide the needed assistance for Nanay Feliza.
“Initiating a fund drive to support Nanay Feliza is an option we are discussing right now,” Monterona adding that his group is now setting up fund drive mechanisms and that Mr. Macalino will be spearheading the said activity.
It was in 1990 when Nanay Feliza first arrived in Saudi Arabia to work as a domestic helper. She revealed that she absconded from her employer due to alleged sexual harassment and physical abuses.
An estimated 1.2 million Filipino workers living and working in Saudi Arabia, and about 250,000 are working as household service workers (HSWs) mostly women.