St. Luke’s Medical Center, one of the leading hospitals in the Philippines, has sought to distance itself from an irate motorist who appeared in a viral road rage video over the weekend, saying he does not work for them — although he used to, kinda.
The man, identified by the Department of Transport (DOTr) as a certain Dr. Tomas Mendez, was shown standing beside a vehicle and cursing its driver, accusing the latter of cutting him off on the road. Mendez also belittled the other man, saying he was just a driver of public transport.
Off-camera, a female passenger can be heard accusing Mendez of throwing something at their vehicle, while the former repeatedly shouts at her to shut up.
The poster of the original video, one Fran Rusti, did not explain the circumstances that led Mendez to scream at the unidentified driver, nor did he say where the event took place. The weekend post, which has been shared almost 208,000 times, also showed another clip of Mendez arguing with another driver on a different day.
In a statement posted to its Facebook account, St. Luke’s said that Mendez is “not connected with the hospital or any company that is affiliated” with it. They added that Mendez was a former ENT (ear, nose, and throat specialist) resident trainee, but was never part of their roster of physicians.
Meanwhile, the DOTr said in a statement yesterday that the Land Transport Office, a government agency responsible for issuing driver’s licenses, will ask Mendez to explain his behavior in the video. It also asked the Philippine Medical Association, an organization of healthcare professionals, and the Professional Regulation Commission, a government agency that issues licenses to doctors, to do something about Mendez.
“Should you be involved in a traffic incident, don’t let your emotions get the better of you to the point that you will curse, malign or hurt other people,” the DOTr added.
In an interview with radio station Radyo Pilipinas yesterday, DOTr Assistant Secretary Goddess Libiran said a person such as Mendez should not be granted a driver’s license.
“If you were to ask me, these kinds of people should not be given a license. When you drive you should know how to control your temper. What if he were armed, what if he had a gun? He might have killed someone if he got involved in another little traffic incident,” she said.