MANILA – At least two big facilities in Metro Manila would start accepting people suspected to be carriers of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) by the second week of April, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles announced on Thursday.
In a virtual presser, Nograles said the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City and the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Malate, Manila are being readied to be used as “fully-functional” quarantine sites by April 10.
“We would like to report that the PICC will be ready by April 10. The facilities are being prepared by the DPWH and EEI Corp.,” he said. “The Rizal Memorial Sports Complex being readied by PRIME-BMD or Razon Group will be ready by April 10 as well.”
Nograles said the PICC and Rizal Memorial Sports Complex would have 700 beds and 600 beds, respectively.
He also said the World Trade Center in Pasay City, which can accommodate 650 potential Covid-19 carriers, would also be operational by April 12.
“It is being set up by ICCP and Ayala or Makati Development Corp. and it will have 650 beds,” Nograles said, noting that the PICC, Rizal Memorial Sports Complex, and World Trade Center can house a total of 1,950 individuals.
The government has also identified other facilities that can be used as quarantine areas, among them the Quezon Institute, Amoranto Stadium, Quezon Memorial Circle Complex, Veterans Memorial Medical Center in Quezon City; Philippine Sports Complex in Pasig; and Duty Free Philippines in Parañaque.
“Decisive action has been taken to ensure that millions stay home in order to contain this outbreak, and the government has marshaled all its resources to ensure that every Filipino family is taken care of during this trying period,” Nograles said.
The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has sought the conversion of maritime vessels, hotels, and other private establishments into quarantine and isolation facilities.
Government facilities, including public schools, would also be transformed as quarantine sites to arrest the spread of Covid-19 in the country.
The IATF-EID has already directed all local government units to identify government facilities that can be used as quarantine centers.
Meanwhile, the use of public schools for quarantine and isolation purposes will be subject to the approval of the Department of Education regional directors.
On Wednesday, the Department of Health reported that the Philippines has 2,311 confirmed Covid-19 cases, with 96 deaths and 50 recoveries. (PNA)