Treatment czar: COVID-19 situation in PH still 'manageable'

Published June 16, 2021, 12:54 PM

by Analou de Vera


The spike in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the different parts of the country is still “”manageable,” an official of the Department of Health (DOH) said Wednesday, June 16.

“Yes, manageable,” said DOH Undersecretary and treatment czar Leopoldo Vega during the Laging Handa press briefing on Wednesday.

The critical care utilization rate in the National Capital Region (NCR) is now at “low-risk”, he said.

“Dito sa Metro Manila, collectively, makita natin na bumaba naman talaga ang usage ng ICU/critical care beds. In fact, ang utilization rate ng mga ICU dito sa Metro Manila ay bumaba na sa mga 50 percent. Nasa low risk category na sya (Here in Metro Manila, collectively, we can see that the usage of ICU/critical care beds has really dropped. In fact, the utilization rate of ICU (beds) in Metro Manila has dropped to about 50 percent. It is currently under the low risk category),” said Vega.

Vega, however, flagged the cities of Makati and Muntinlupa which are currently under the “high-risk position” in terms of ICU bed capacity.

The Health official likewise said that COVID-19 cases in Visayas and Mindanao were still increasing.

“Napapansin na rin namin ngayon ang pagtaas o pag surge ng new cases lalong lalo na sa Western Visayas, partly sa Mindanao–Caraga, Zamboanga area at saka sa Southern Mindanao (We are also noticing an increase or surge of new cases especially in Western Visayas, partly in Mindanao-Caraga, Zamboanga area and then in Southern Mindanao),” he said.

The DOH, through its regional offices, has already sent some mechanical ventilators, Bilevel Positive Airway Pressure (BiPAP) machines, and oxygenators to various hospitals in Visayas and Mindanao to increase their critical care capacity.

Vega encouraged the local government units (LGUs) to improve the implementation of health protocols and their strategy in terms of prevention, detection, isolation, treatment, and reintegration.

“Kailangan i-implement talaga mabuti ang minimum public health standards at saka pag test, contact trace, and isolate ng mga pasyente na suspect in less than 48 hours para mababa ang transmission (It is necessary to implement the minimum public health standards very well and then test, contact trace, and isolate suspected patients in less than 48 hours to lessen the transmission),” he said.