Cebu City to make more COVID-19 beds available to address full hospitals
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Cebu City is planning to open more beds for isolation and treatment centers as experts advised the city that the health care system has become overwhelmed.
Acting Mayor Michael Rama said the city needs more beds for isolation and treatment of mild to moderate symptomatic patients of COVID-19.
First and foremost, he instructed the contractor of the Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC) to prepare the first three floors of the CCMC to be functional for COVID-19 patients the soonest time possible.
The city government is also hiring 100 nurses to augment the staff of the CCMC to help manage the influx of COVID-19 patients.
“I want it as soon as possible. All three floors, if we can use all of them, I want all of them for COVID-19. I will be visiting the CCMC from time to time,” said the acting mayor.
Rama also directed Councilor Eduardo Rama, Jr., to fascilitate the transformation of the Cebu City Sports Complex (CCSC) to a 150-bed isolation center.
Councilor Rama said the CCSC isolation center will be ready in the next few days. When the staff are installed and the facility begins accepting patients, the sports center will be closed from joggers or sports enthusiasts.
“We will not close it for now, but when the isolation center is open, of course, sirad-an gyod nato ang CCSC,” said the councilor.
The councilor said that if the CCSC isolation is staffed, it may be allowed to care for moderate symptomatic cases since it is close to the major hospitals in the city.
Acting Mayor Rama has also instructed the increase of beds in the Cebu City Quarantine Center (CCQC) from the current 200 to 3oo beds to accomodate more mild to moderately symptomatic patients.
He said that the increase on isolation would help decongest the hospitals.
Doctor Peter Mancao, the deputy task force head for the North District and practicing physician, said that the city’s current state is “not good” as the hospitals, especially three of the biggest private hospitals, are already full.
“Nag-open og rooms ang uban pero puno na gyod. Kung manawag kag ambulant services, dili na sila modawat kung walay reservation sa hospitals,” said Mancao.
(Others opened rooms but they’re all full. If ambulant services call, they won’t accept if there’s no reservation in the hospital.)
With this, he believes the city must act accordingly to the needs of the health care system considering that an overwhelmed health care system may take the city back to its condition in 2020.
He added that the city must take the safer route and impose stricter quarantine measures.
The City Health Department (CHD) will open two new cluster clinics as well to help reduce the number of symptomatic people going to the hospitals.
Doctor Jeffrey Ibones, the CHD head, said that they are hoping to reduce the number of individuals going directly to the hospitals to get a check-up or swabbed.
Those who will go to the cluster clinic will be home-quarantined after the swab while waiting for their results.
Acting Mayor Rama said that with the restrictions he imposed such as the liquor ban and earlier curfews, he hopes the public will understand the need for the city to prevent a further rise of cases so that the hospitals could catch up with the demand for health care.
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