Hospital queue grows longer, rise in COVID-19 cases in Cebu City worries EOC

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio - CDN Digital Multi-Media Reporter | July 23,2021 - 03:36 PM

This photo taken on April 6, 2021, shows a relative wearing personal protective equipment while attending to a family member with COVID-19 at a makeshift ward in a hospital in Manila. (Photo by JAM STA ROSA / AFP)

CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Cebu City Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is worried about the persistently increasing number of COVID-19 cases in the city.

The city recorded 211 new cases on July 22, 2021, and the active cases rose to 1,748, surpassing that of Bohol and Negros Oriental provinces in the region.

The hospital utilization rate is now at 65 percent for public hospitals and 52 percent for private hospitals, which is apparent in the long queues for admission in certain hospitals in the city.

The Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH-7) has already deployed additional health care professionals in the hospitals in the city to augment the forces amid the rising cases.

Councilor Joel Garganera, the deputy chief implementor of the EOC, said that the increased utilization rate was brought by the adjustment period for hospitals to reopen COVID-19 dedicated beds amid the rise in cases.

“Sama sad sauna, for a while wala tay kaso, it took a while to find our balance. Mao puy nahitabo sa hospitals, tag-as ang queuing nato run, but DOH is moving heaven and earth to deploy additional professionals and nagprocure silag additional equipment,” said Garganera.

The hospitals had closed down some of the COVID wards due to the low cases in the past months and it took them time to reopen these, causing a hold up in the admission.

Still, Garganera said they expect the hospitals to fully adjust and normalize operations unless the number of cases rises higher than what is manageable.

For now, the EOC assures that they are stepping up contact tracing, isolation, and opening more quarantine beds for positive individuals.

Yet if the cases continue to rise, the city may be under threat of getting a raised quarantine level, something the city could no longer afford due to the limited resources.

This is why the EOC is once again appealing to the public especially to establishments, work offices, and residential households to follow health protocols such as wearing masks and maintaining social distancing.

Business establishments must be quick to dispel overcrowding and maintain social distancing, workplaces must ensure that workers follow the health protocols, and workers must also properly behave to avoid bringing home the virus.

The EOC has noted that the recent admissions and even deaths are no longer confined to the senior citizen age group but already include middle-aged individuals.

Furthermore, the patients deteriorate faster especially for the unvaccinated individuals, which is why the EOC also encourages the public to get vaccinated and avail of the city’s free vaccination program.

Garganera said the EOC needs the help of the public if the city is to manage the COVID-19 cases without compromising the health care system.     /rcg


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TAGS: bohol, Cebu City, Councilor Joel Garganera, COVID-19, EOC, hospital utilization rate, Negros Oriental, rising cases

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