21 health workers among 59 new COVID-19 cases in Baguio City

Published October 30, 2020, 10:57 AM

by Zaldy Comanda

BAGUIO CITY – Twenty-one health workers were among the 59 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases recorded here on Thursday, October 29.

Of the new patients, 30 were detected through contact tracing, and 21 through expanded testing that included the health workers, while seven were symptomatic, and one was discovered after a test conducted as part of work requirement.

As of 5 p.m., October 29, the city posted a total of 2,054 confirmed cases, 651 active, 1,376 recoveries and 27 deaths.

Mayor Benjamin Magalong said the city continues to aggressively work on increasing its quarantine and isolation bed capacities to accommodate the increasing number of COVID-19 cases, not only in the city but also in nearby Benguet.

Magalong reported the Eurotel management already allowed the use of its 140-bed hotel in the city as a quarantine and isolation facility, which will be in addition to the city’s existing isolation units to prevent possible congestion that might lead to the local health care system being compromised.

The use of Eurotel as a quarantine facility will be in addition to the already operational 60-bed Ferioni Apartment along Teodora Alonzo St. as one of the city’s quarantine facilities initially allotted for individuals waiting for the release of their swab test results from the private and public testing centers.

The expenses for the operation of the additional quarantine and isolation facilities in the city, such as the Ferioni apartments and the Eurotel, will be shouldered by the National Task Force on COVID-19.

Magalong assured that the city will continue to work on exploring other feasible quarantine and isolation facilities to accommodate the possible increase in the number of patients who will have to be confined to prevent the spread of the deadly virus in the city.

City Health Officer Dr. Rowena Galpo reported that the current utilization of the city’s 323-bed isolation facilities at the former Sto. Niño hospital, and at the Baguio Teachers Camp was already over 57 percent.

Galpo said that even the isolation and intensive care unit (ICU) beds in the private hospitals were also within the warning to danger zones, thus, the need for additional isolation facilities for suspected and probable COVID cases.

The Sto.Niño hospital has an initial capacity of 95 beds with provisions to increase this to 300 beds, while the Roxas Hall, Hernandez Hall and Superintendent’s Quarters at the Baguio Teachers Camp have a combined capacity of 228 beds.