Some healthcare workers from regions with low numbers of COVID-19 cases will be deployed in Metro Manila amid a surge in coronavirus infections.
Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Leopoldo Vega said that they already coordinated with the different regional health offices.
“So kahapon, nag commit na yung ibang regions na magpapadala na ng kanilang mga doktor. So ito yung isang pamamaraan din na pwede kaming mag-augment ng healthcare workers dito sa Metro Manila (So yesterday, the other regions already committed to sending their doctors. So this is also a way to increase the number of healthcare workers here in Metro Manila),” said Vega in a radio interview on Saturday, March 27.
Vega also added that they also coordinated with the Armed Forces of the Philippines to deploy some of their medical staff in Metro Manila.
“Makakatulong din iyon na pwede namin hingin kasi na-deploy sila ngayon sa Davao. Kasi yung Davao region noon tumaas (ang kaso), so nagkaroon ng deployment doon, baka ipabalik nanaman dito sa Metro Manila (It will also be of help—They are currently deployed in Davao because previously it experienced a spike in cases. Maybe they would be sent back to Metro Manila again),” said the Health official.
Vega assured that the medical frontliners who will be deployed in Metro Manila will be provided with accommodation, hazard pay, food, transportation, among others.
The DOH official said that the healthcare utilization rate of some big hospitals in Metro Manila is now at “high-risk.”
“Sa mga level 3 hospitals, yung hospitals na malalaki, mataas talaga ang occupancy ng COVID beds and COVID isolation beds, umaabot na iyan sa 74 to 76 percent (In level 3 hospitals, or the big facilities, the occupancy of COVID beds and COVID isolation beds is really high, reaching about 74 to 76 percent),” said Vega. This is particularly observed in Manila, Makati, Taguig, and Quezon City, he added.
Vega said that they are also looking for other facilities that can serve as isolation areas. Currently, hotels that served as isolation facilities have an occupancy rate of 80 to 82 percent, he said.
“Sa Metro Manila kinukulang na tayo ng isolation at treatment facilities kasi punuan to dahil sa ROFs (returning overseas Filipinos) na dumadating sa ating bansa and naka quarantine din sila sa mga hotels (In Metro Manila, the capacity of some isolation and treatment facilities are insufficient because they have full capacity as some ROFs are also quarantined in hotels),” explained Vega.