By Jeffrey G. Damicog
The increased capacity of hospitals to receive patients with the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) will help Metro Manila flatten the curve, said COVID-19 task force adviser Dr. Ted Herbosa on Monday, June 22.
“In Metro Manila we were able to raise up the health system’s capacity,” Herbosa said during an interview over CNN Philippines.
“When you say the curve is flattened, it is below that capacity. That means when you go around the private hospitals now only 20 percent of their COVID beds are occupied,” he explained.
Herbosa said he was able to make rounds of hospitals recently and found low cases COVID-19.
“They are beginning now to admit the regular cases that need hospitalization,” he said.
On the other hand, he said there are still some hospitals with high number of cases of COVID-19 including the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) due sporadic cases in Manila.
Despite this, Herbosa said “our capacity for any outbreak we would be able to handle and we would be handling them properly.”
“Even the doctors are now well trained, wear PPEs (personal protective equipment), know how to do ventilatory support for patients, and use more recoveries and more discharges happening in these past few days,” he added.
On the other hand, Herbosa defended the decision to place Cebu City under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and Talisay City under modified (MECQ) starting June 15.
“We found that the hospitals were already burdened with the number of cases being admitted,” explained Herbosa who was among the officials who visited the areas to find out why the cases there increased.
Aside from high population densities in the two cities, the doctor attributed the rise in the case also to the attitudes of the residents as well as the local government policy to send home those who tested positive.
“The only reason I can think of is the behavior of people and then we discovered the home quarantine policy wherein they were sent home,” he cited.