Ilocos Norte health workers help to build field hospital
LAOAG CITY—Health workers in state-run Mariano Marcos Memorial Hospital and Medical Center (MMMH&MC) have stepped up their COVID-19 response by building a field hospital as it starts to be overwhelmed by the rising number of COVID-19 patients, officials said.
Dr. Mari Anne Quijano-Orros, MMMH&MC medical consultant, said Wednesday that the basketball court and hospital driveways were being converted into field wards.
“[This is] in view of the increasing number of [COVID-19] suspects and confirmed cases occupying the regular isolation wards,” Orros said in a Facebook post.
MMMH&MC, the primary COVID-19 treatment center in Ilocos Norte, has 65 percent of the 114 COVID-19 beds occupied, according to the Department of Health (DOH).
In the past days, Ilocos Norte had been experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases, with 1,119 patients. As of July 14, at least 121 new ones were added to the province’s tally.
Eleven of the 23 towns and cities in Ilocos Norte have at least 21 active COVID-19 cases, the provincial government data show.
The capital city of Laoag has the highest number of active cases at 429.
The DOH said Ilocos Norte’s average daily attack rate per 100,000 population increased to 14.22 percent, which is considered high.
Jhey-ar Mangati, MMMH&MC’s health education and promotions officer, said during a press briefing on Wednesday that the construction materials that had been mostly donated by the public, were used to build the cubicles of the field hospitals.
The hospital has accounted for at least P100,000 in cash donations from the public after it appealed for help on July 7 in light of the increasing number of COVID-19 patients being admitted to the hospital, Mangati said.
Orros said the hospital workers have been “doing whatever they can, helping however they can, [and] as fast as they can, to accommodate the surge.”
The hospital is also “in dire need” of institutional workers who could help in its COVID-19 response, according to Orros.
As of July 14, Ilocos Norte had logged at least 4,868 total COVID-19 cases, of which 3,662 had recovered, while 87 had died.
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