The Philippines will have a hard time handling an Indonesia-like coronavirus cases (COVID-19) surge driven by the more transmissible Delta variant, a group of health workers warned on Wednesday, July 21.
In an interview with CNN Philippines, Alliance of Health Workers National President Robert Mendoza said the country will have a hard time coping with the severe impact of the Delta variant due to understaffing and healthcare capacity issues.
“Mahihirapan tayong mag-recruit ng health workers kung napakababa pa rin ng pasahod at benepisyo hindi pa binibigay (It will be very difficult for us to recruit health workers if wages are still very low and benefits have not been provided),” Mendoza said.
“Isa yun sa nakakatakot kung dumami yung [kaso], parang Indonesia, magkaroon ng surge. Hindi kakayanin ng ating gobyerno, doon pa lang sa health facilities lalo na yung nasa rural areas, kulang na kulang talaga (That’s one of the scary things if we experience Indonesia-like surge. Our government can’t afford it, even our health facilities, especially those in rural areas, are really lacking), he added.
Mendoza said that many health workers have already opted for early retirement.
He also noted that ventilators and intensive care unit rooms in private hospitals “will not be enough.”
As of July 20, Indonesia had recorded nearly three million total COVID-19 cases and over 76,000 deaths.
It has become Asia’s new epicenter of the pandemic.
The Philippines, meanwhile, has so far reported 35 cases of the Delta variant.