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In Baguio, doctors and volunteers address PPE shortage by making alternative protective equipment using acetate film, sponge and velcro


Doctors and volunteers in Baguio Benguet Medical Society have started making Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) alternative due to the shortage of supplies, amid their fight against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

On Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho Sunday, physician and internal medicine Dr. Mary Gay Buliyat said they decided to take action instead of just sitting around and wait for PPE supplies to come.

"Hindi po kami titigil na gagawa ng alternative na PPE," Dr. Buliyat said. "Sa ngayon wala pang kasiguraduhan saan kami kukuha ng standard PPE."

"Ayaw po naming hintayin yun. Kung darating yung standard PPE o makahanap kami ng mga standard na PPE —pero delikado po na umasa lang doon," she added.

The Baguio Benguet Medical Society are giving PPE alternatives to their fellow medical personnel for free.

Dr. Buliyat said the improvised hazmat is made of acetate film, dishwashing sponge and velcro.

After the government was criticized for failing to provide healthcare workers with PPE, the Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Rosario Vergeire said the lack of PPE supplies amid the COVID-19 pandemic is due to global shortage.

The Lung Center of the Philippines is quickly running out of PPEs amid the increasing number COVID-19 cases and persons under investigation (PUIs).

Like the doctors and volunteers in Baguio, more and more people are getting creative. Some folks from Technological University of the Philippines - Visayas (TUPV) are planning to create PPEs for health workers in Negros with the use of a 3D printer, while medical interns at Ateneo have been producing face shields for COVID-19 frontliners.

As of Tuesday afternoon, DOH confirmed 90 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of infections in the Philippines to 552 with 35 deaths and 20 recoveries. — Jannielyn Ann Bigtas/LA, GMA News

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