Medical society appeals for more vaccine, medicine supplies for Iloilo amid spike in COVID-19 cases

Published June 20, 2021, 2:31 PM

by Analou de Vera


The Iloilo Medical Society has appealed to the national government to provide more supplies of vaccines and medicines for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as Iloilo is currently experiencing a surge in cases.

“COVID-19 virus continues to spread havoc in our country and the city and province of Iloilo is not spared. In fact, we have been hit hard with an increase not only in terms of number of cases but in terms of morbidity and mortality as well,” the group said in its Letter of Appeal.

The appeal was addressed to President Duterte, Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III, and Vaccine Czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr.

The group said that government and private hospitals in the area need more supplies of medical equipment as well as medicines such as Remdesivir.

“Medical equipment especially high flow oxygen cannulas and ventilators are short of supply as well. There is also a short supply of medicine like Remdesivir and other medications used for COVID-19 infection,” it said.

The national government should also allot additional COVID-19 vaccines in the area, the Iloilo-based medical society said.

“Increase the allotment of COVID-19 vaccines for Iloilo, which is badly hit by the virus right now, to mitigate the impact of the virus and hopefully reach the herd immunity soon,” it said.

“Preventing the infection is a lot more cost effective than focusing only to the curative aspect of care, not to mention its other economic impacts due to restrictions on our physical movements that are being imposed,” it added.

Additional healthcare workers are also needed, it said.

“[We appeal for] augmentation of our medical personnel both in public and private hospitals such as nurses, nursing assistants, and medical doctors to take care of the increased number of patients affected by COVID-19 virus,” the group said.

The group also noted that the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) should settle its financial obligation to hospitals in Iloilo.

“The delayed and/or non-payment of PhilHealth to hospitals for the coverage for COVID-19 patients threatens the financial stability of these institutions,” it said.

“If PhilHealth fails to fulfill its obligations in a timely manner, it will have a great impact to the already burdened healthcare facilities that may even threaten their continued existence,” it said.

Based on the case bulletin of DOH-Western Visayas on Saturday, June 19, the total number of COVID-19 cases in Iloilo province stood at 10,255, wherein 2,456 were still active; while 7,541 have already recovered and 256 patients died.

For Iloilo City, the overall tally of cases is at 9,969. Out of the total, 7,234 have already recovered, while 252 died. There are 2,480 patients who are still being treated.