Cebu still in safe levels, has enough frontliners
CEBU CITY, Philippines – Local health officials assured Cebuanos that the island-province still has enough medical frontliners to respond to the COVID-19 cases here amid plans of sending some of them to Metro Manila.
Today, Tuesday (April 6), at least 50 health workers from the Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center (VSMMC) and the Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7) will be flying to the country’s capital to help in the government’s COVID-19 response there.
The team consists of 11 doctors, 35 nurses, and four medical technologists.
With this, Dr. Mary Jean Loreche, spokesperson of DOH-7, assured the public that Cebu will still be left with sufficient manpower to attend to local COVID-19 cases.
“Remember, our cases have already leveled off. We do have sufficient manpower, sufficient enough that it won’t be a risk for us to send them to areas outside Cebu that are in need of our help,” said Loreche in a mix of English and Cebuano.
DOH-7 has been hiring medical workers to be deployed at the National Capital Region (NCR). They will be helping bring the COVID-19 outbreak there down to controllable levels.
Based on DOH-7’s data, Cebu City alone has a total of 30,233 licensed and practicing healthcare workers.
The regional health office reported that NCR needed around additional 100 to 200 nurses alone to help decongest hospitals in Metro Manila.
Meanwhile in Cebu City, the capital of Cebu, DOH-7 has observed a gradual but continuous decline of the critical care utilization rate.
As of April 5, the critical care utilization rate of hospitals in the city, both for public and private, was at 31.7 percent, said Loreche.
Loreche also pointed to the continuous decline of hospital occupancy rates as another factor on their decision to send medical manpower to NCR.
“I am very confident we will not be needing healthcare workers if you look at our critical care utilization rate… We’re really in the safe zone, both manpower-wise and in terms of our critical care utilization rates,” she added.
Critical care utilization rates are usually used to gauge the gravity of the COVID-19 outbreak in an area. / dcb
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