MANILA, Philippines — The number of healthcare workers (HCW) at the Philippine Orthopedic Center (POC) who are infected with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is now at 114, according to the hospital’s official statement.
The POC administration said 80 of these HCWs are active cases and the hospital is now having difficulties in finding quarantine facilities for them.
The POC added that the 20% allocated beds at the hospital are not enough to accommodate the healthcare workers and other patients who are positive for COVID-19.
However, the Department of Health (DOH) said that despite this situation, closing the hospital or placing it under total lockdown is not an option as many patients will be affected.
The DOH said they are still in talks as to which facilities will the mild and asymptomatic HCWs be sent.
Those who are positive can be admitted at the POC itself.
“We do this strategically. We close down units of the hospitals if needed kung talagang may mga highly infected employees dyan or ‘di kaya maraming nangyaring decontamination so that we can decontaminate. But not closing the whole hospital,” DOH spokesperson Usec. Maria Rosario Vergeire said.
Meanwhile, Vergeire said epidemiologic analysts believe that there are still no bases to declare that the country is already experiencing the second wave of COVID-19.
“As to the second wave nag-aaral tayo pero wala tayong nade-declare na ganito hindi parin nakikita yan na mayroon tayong ganyan. We will be continuing studying our situation,” the health official said.
She added the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) is still yet to ascertain whether the National Capital Region (NCR) will be reverted to modified enhance community quarantine status.
“The other parameters that are being utilized by the IATF in deciding. So, we have the case doubling time, the mortality doubling time, we also have the critical care utilization rate. Aside from that, we have other indicators to consider the other sectors of society, like there are economic indicators, there are social indicators, and there are security indicators as well,” Vergeire said.
The President is expected to announce at the end of the month his decision as to which quarantine restrictions will be applied in key cities and provinces nationwide. — (with details from Aiko Miguel) /mbmf
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