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COVID-19 waitlist growing in NCR hospitals

The list of COVID-19 patients waiting to be admitted in hospitals in Metro Manila is continuously growing amid the rising cases of the viral disease in the country.

According to Lei Alviz’s report on “24 Oras” on Wednesday, several probable and confirmed COVID-19 patients have been waiting for days in the emergency room.

At the Philippine General Hospital, 205 of its 210 beds dedicated for COVID-19 have already been occupied.

PGH’s intensive care unit already reached its full capacity as well.

Meanwhile, 34 confirmed and 24 probable COVID-19 cases are still on the PGH’s waiting list.

“Hindi po kami ngayon makatanggap ng referral kasi po eh puno na at ang dami pong nag-aabang sa ER, ang aming tinatawag na holding area,” Dr. Jonas del Rosario, PGH spokesperson, said.

“‘Yong iba pong naka-waitlist, nandoon ho sa ER, nasa holding area kasi nga ho nag-walk in. Marami po waitlisted, nasa kani-kanilang mga bahay na naghihintay po,” he added.

At Fe Del Mundo Medical Center, all of its 60 beds for COVID-19 patients have already been occupied.

About 50 to 60 patients, meanwhile, are still waiting to be admitted.

“Bumaba ‘yong bed capacity namin kasi may mga nadagdag na staff namin na kinakailangan ma-quarantine. Ni-limit na lang muna namin talaga ng 60 kasi talagang so far, wala pa kaming maidagdag na nursing staff,” Fe Del Mundo Medical Center medical director Dr. Elsie Locson said.

San Lazaro Hospital also reached its full capacity. A total of 83 patients are still on the waiting list.

Moreover, at the Lung Center of the Philippines, 90% of its 116 beds have already been occupied.

A total of 84 confirmed and 20 probable cases are currently admitted in the hospital, while 50 patients are in the ICU.

“Mas marami ngayon considering that we doubled our capacity for COVID cases and kung puno noong April, puno pa rin ngayon. In terms of volume, mas marami,” Lung Center of the Philippines spokesperson Dr. Norberto Francisco said.

“‘Pag COVID kasi, it’s not as simple as assigning a bed. You have to have the right equipment, the right room kasi ang daming requirements ng COVID patient,” he added.

Earlier, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the government is now requiring public hospitals to increase its allocation of bed capacity for COVID-19 patients to 50 to 70%.

Vergeire said it is part of the One Hospital Command strategy of the government to decongest hospitals amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Initially, both public and private hospitals are required to allocate 30% of their bed capacity to COVID-19 patients, a requirement that not all hospitals were able to comply with due to lack of resources.

As for private hospitals, Vergeire said they are required to allocate 20% of their bed capacity for COVID-19 patients and hike it to 30% in case there is a surge in cases. —Ma. Angelica Garcia/LDF, GMA News