National Task Force against COVID-19 Chief Implementer and Presidential Peace Adviser Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. proposed the establishment of four more hospitals in Metro Manila to cater to the increasing need of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patients.
Citing data from the Department of Health, Galvez said that there has been an increase in bed occupancy in the metro breaching the “danger zone” due to increased COVID-19 cases, which is why more care facilities are being scouted to cope with the demand.
He said they are looking into having an increased bed capacity at the East Avenue Medical Center and the Quirino Memorial Center in about one or two months’ time, while also looking at alternative options near the metro.
“Last Friday, we went to Fort Magsaysay (Nueva Ecija) to see the more than 400-bed capacity that we can use for COVID-19 patients,” Galvez said.
Meanwhile, Galvez revealed that the COVID-19 situation in Cebu City is now improving as the number of new cases and deaths have started to decline, in an apparent display of effectiveness of the implementation of the National Action Plan (NAP) against COVID-19.
In a statement sent to reporters, Galvez said the implementation of the NAP’s Phase II is gaining ground as local government units have ramped up their COVID-19 testing and contact-tracing capabilities, while the national government and private sector continue to forge partnerships to establish more testing laboratories across the country.
Galvez emphasized that the NAP’s second phase centers on “saving lives and mitigating the impact as one, towards economic and social recovery.”
The NAP against COVID-19, which was approved by Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases early this month, seeks to create a balance between breathing life into the nation’s economy and at the same time, protect the health and welfare of Filipinos against the deadly virus.
Its main objectives are to contain and manage new COVID-19 cases in high-risk areas; sustain the wins against COVID-19 and continue best practices; balance the nation’s health and economic welfare; localize COVID-19 response by rallying peoples’ support and participation; and keep a low fatality rate including non-COVID cases.
Galvez said this was a good sign as the country could not afford to go back to a nationwide lockdown.
“The National Action Plan Phase II’s main goal is to rehabilitate our economy and ensure that our health capacity can cope with the cases,” Galvez said.