Prepping for rise in Covid admissions

TWO private hospitals in Cebu announced on Sunday, June 14, 2020, their plan to expand their beds and facilities dedicated for patients who tested positive for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

In an advisory posted on its official Facebook page, the Cebu Doctors’ Group of Hospitals (CebuDoc Group) said it has already discharged several Covid-19 recoveries and it continues to double its capacity to accept more patients.

From one pneumonia wing and two isolation centers, CebuDoc Group added an entire floor for Covid-19 admissions at the Cebu Doctors’ University Hospital (CDUH) in Cebu City. It is also opening another pneumonia wing, which will increase capacity by 200 percent.

It also said it will open a Covid-19 ward that will cater to moderate and mildly symptomatic patients in two weeks.

The Chong Hua Hospital (CHH) also said that it will raise its bed allocation for Covid-19 patients by 300 percent and its intensive care unit (ICU) beds by 100 percent. The hospital’s statement did not specify the number of beds.

“While all these are being put in place as soon as safely possible, it is our appeal that our doctors and health care teams be allowed time to make the necessary work adjustments in the unlikely event that more beds from our total bed capacity will need to be allocated for Covid-19 patients,” read a portion of its statement.

Dr. Jaime Bernadas, director of the Department of Health-Central Visayas (DOH 7), said several private hospitals in Cebu have already committed to increase the number of beds dedicated to Covid-19 patients as a response to the increasing number of Covid-19 admissions.

He said immediately after the targeted mass testing in the cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu Lapu, negotiations with private hospitals to increase Covid-19 beds were made.

He said they are arranging DOH assistance with regard to additional personnel, adding that private hospitals must ensure that personal protective equipment are commensurate to the number of dedicated beds. A census of Covid-19 patients must also be conducted, he said.

“We will monitor (their) compliance. We have initiated already deployment of personnel,” Bernadas said.

Meanwhile, the CebuDoc Group said it is doubling its testing capacity for Covid-19 with its own RT-PCR (real-time polymerase chain reaction) molecular laboratory, which was already inspected by the DOH.

“We will go live to help the overwhelmed sub-national laboratory,” reads a portion of its statement.

The Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center sub-national laboratory had 469 pending samples as of Saturday, June 13.

Bernadas said the CDUH and the CHH in Cebu City were already visited by the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine, the Health Facilities and Services Regulatory Bureau and the World Health Organization composite team for licensing and accreditation.

As of Saturday, June 13, 36 of the 48 beds at the quarantine facility at the old Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu campus on Gen. Maxilom Ave. were occupied. Twelve were admitted that day, while one had recovered.

The Bayanihan Cebu IEC Field Center on Pope John Paul II Ave., which has 130 beds, had one patient.

There are three classifications for Covid-positive patients:

Class 1 are patients who are asymptomatic but with no comorbidities. These positive patients are qualified for home quarantine.

Class 2A are patients who are asymptomatic but with co-morbidities.

Class 2B are patients with mild symptoms.

Class 3 are patients who display severe or critical symptoms.

Class 1 patients go to Barangay Isolation Centers, while Class 2 patients go to field centers. Class 3 patients go to hospitals. (WBS)