ICU capacity of Metro Manila hospitals nears limit, says DOH
MANILA, Philippines — The capacity of Metro Manila hospitals to accommodate severe patients is nearing its limit, as the country grapples to flatten the curve of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the Department of Health (DOH) said Friday.
According to Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, this was among the factors the DOH considered when it recommended to President Rodrigo Duterte the extension of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the metropolis.
“Based doon sa critical care utilization rate, makikita natin na ‘yung use of intensive care units (ICU) dito sa NCR (National Capital Region) nandun na siya sa near ng maximum. Ibigsabihin gamit na gamit na talaga,” Vergeire said in a virtual press briefing in Malacañang.
Duterte earlier approved the extension of the ECQ in Metro Manila, Calbarzon, Central Luzon, Mindoro island, and the provinces of Pangasinan, Benguet, Catanduanes, and Albay until May 15.
Metro Manila, the country’s economic and political center, accounts for the vast majority of the Philippines’ total COVID-19 infections.
As of the latest tally by the Department of Health (DOH), the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country has breached the 7,000th mark, with 211 new cases on Friday, bring the total to 7,192 cases.
To improve the situation, Vergeire said the DOH has already started procuring equipment for Metro Manila hospitals and helped expand their ICU capacities.
“Hindi tayo magpapatayo ng mga bagong ospital, ang gagawin natin iaayos natin ang proseso, maglalagay tayo ng dedicated rooms, dedicated wards para sa ating COVID-19 (patients),” Vergeire said.
“We cannot build new structures but we are going to have these rational processes,” she stressed.
The Inquirer Foundation supports our healthcare frontliners and is still accepting cash donations to be deposited at Banco de Oro (BDO) current account #007960018860 or donate through PayMaya using this link .
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.