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21 Filipino doctors have died due to COVID-19 —PHAP

A total of 21 Filipino doctors have died due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), according to data from the Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines (PHAP).

According to Ivan Mayrina's Tuesday report on 24 Oras, this was primarily due to patients lying about their condition and travel or exposure history.

Meanwhile, the lack of personal protective equipment for health workers in private hospitals was also a factor.

"'Wag naman lahat government hospitals lang ang bigyan nila ng PPE," Rustico Jimenez, president of PHAP said.

"Marami silang sinasabi na dumating na pero actually walang nakukuha 'yung private hospitals, private consultants tayo, we buy our own kaso wala ring makuha," he added.

The Department of Health has previously said that the lack of PPEs was a global problem as countries competed with each other over the supply.

Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration on Monday released a memorandum for the faster release of PPEs.

The Department of Health-Region 9 has confirmed that a doctor has died due to possible COVID-19 in Zamboanga City.

The 38-year-old pediatrician displayed symptoms on March 26, but he was not tested for the virus.

"He died, we were able to get a swab, specimen on this last night," Joshua Brilliantes, assistant regional director of DOH-9, said.

On Monday morning, Dr. Mary Grace Lim from the Asian Hospital in Muntinlupa also succumbed to the virus.

The 40-year-old doctor is remembered by her workmates as a fighter and an inspiration to the rest.

"She has always been a fighter. Seeing her in the ICU really softens our heart, but it becomes a motivation for them," an attendee to a private mass for Lim said. —Joahna Lei Casilao/LDF, GMA News