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PNP, AFP to deploy healthcare team to NKTI —DOH

The Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) will deploy personnel to help augment the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI), the Department of Health (DOH) said Friday.

This was after the NKTI earlier this week said its emergency room services have reached full capacity with patients undergoing dialysis and with leptospirosis and COVID-19.

“Kailangan talaga manpower, so we immediately called PNP and AFP and immediately naman po rumisponde, magpapadala at ide-deploy nila ‘yung kanilang healthcare cadre sa NKTI para makatulong,” Vergeire told CNN Philippines.

(What they really need is manpower, so we immediately called the PNP and AFP and they immediately responded, they will deploy their healthcare cadre to the NKTI to help.)

Other hospitals have also favorably responded to the DOH's request for assistance for the NKTI, Vergeire added.

Vergeire said there is up to 80% occupancy at hospitals because of non-COVID-19 cases.

Meanwhile, though they are also seeing an increase in the positivity rate in the National Capital Region, Vergeire said this should not be used as the sole basis of an analysis.

Independent monitoring group OCTA Research on Thursday said that NCR’s seven-day COVID-19 positivity rate jumped from 7.4% on November 15 to 9.2% on November 22.

“But as we always say, let us not only use positivity rate when we do our analysis now. Medyo skewed po kasi kapag yung positivity rate because it is affected by a lot of factors,” Vergeire said.

“Especially now that people prefer to use the antigen test rather than the RT-PCR, so medyo kulang po ‘yung maibibigay sa atin kapag 'yan lang ang gagamitin,” she added.

(Especially now that people prefer to use the antigen test rather than the RT-PCR so the data that this can give is somewhat lacking.)

Vergeire stressed that what is most important is the utilization rate of hospitals and the healthcare system.

“It is at low risk. All of the regions have low-risk utilization,” she said.  —KBK, GMA Integrated News