Sat. Jul 31st, 2021

MANILA – Acting on an appeal by 11 private hospitals amid the COVID-19 crisis, the Department of Health has designated the UP-Philippine General Hospital and Dr. Jose M. Rodriguez Hospital as central health facilities for coronavirus patients care.

The private hospitals said they are already reeling from a drastically reduced workforce and resources so they called the attention of DOH chief Francisco Duque who positively acted on their request and designated the two public hospitals as exclusive facilities for COVID-19 patients.

In an interview Friday, Duque said he already directed officials of UP-Philippine General Hospital and Dr. Jose M. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital to allocate a building that will accommodate those showing symptoms positively and gravely ill with the virus.

Meanwhile, the alliance of 11 hospitals lauded DOH’s fastidious move amid the growing health crisis which, according to them, started to overwhelm healthcare centers.

“We are very scared,” the alliance of 11 hospitals said adding that they already have “depleting resources.”

According to Duque, the PGH will have 140 rooms prepared for COVID-19 patients while Rodriguez would be a “specialized COVID hospital.”

And as it is, the private hospitals said that once the centralized arrangement becomes operational, non-COVID-19 patients will then be transferred from the designated facilities to the private hospitals.

“We are ready to take in the non-COVID-19 patients of the designated COVID-19 hospitals, and if necessary, provide temporary practice privileges to their medical staff whose (non-COVID-19) patients will be transferred to our hospitals,” the alliance of private hospitals said.

Meanwhile, DOH Undersecretary Rosette Vergeire also said the DOH is also considering the Lung Center of the Philippines for a similar setup.

“I spoke with Vince Balanag, the executive director, he said, ‘It would be difficult for that to do since we have many cancer patients who are using linear accelerators,” Duque, who is still in self-isolation, said in Filipino. (iamigo/

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