Some private hospitals resort to old linens as improvised face masks

Aileen Cerrudo

Some private hospitals are resorting to using old linens as improvised face masks as the Private Hospitals Association said there is a “grave deficit” in the supply of personal protective equipment (PPE).

During the Health Committee hearing at the House of Representatives on Wednesday (March 11), Private Hospitals Association President Dr. Jaime Almora said they find it difficult to purchase more supplies of PPEs.

“There is, madam chair, a grave deficit in the number of PPEs, we are resorting actually to improvising like we turn our old linen to cloth mask,” he said.

The Department of Health (DOH) admitted there is a supply deficit of surgical masks due to its high global demand.

“If we have some extras, we would be certainly willing to let the private hospital have some but we cannot promise that what they need we will able to to respond to because our priority is the public health worker,” according to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III.

Duque also assured the government has enough PPE supplies for the health workers in public hospitals.

According to the DOH, the department currently has 59,000 pieces of N95 masks while 20,00 pieces of surgical masks are delivered every week.

Duque said these will be enough to protect health workers in public hospitals for a month.—AAC (with reports from Vincent Arboleda).

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