Issue of March 29, 2020
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Treatment, confinement area for COVID-19 patients named
by Hanna C. Lacsamana

FOR COVID-19 PATIENTS -- Residents near the defunct Sto. Niño Hospital at Lower P. Burgos have allowed the use of the facility as a Covid-19 critical care center after fears of remote infection and other concerns were addressed by Mayor Benjamin Magalong and City Health Services Officer Rowena Galpo in a public consultation on March 27. The residents also allowed the city to proceed with its three-week preparation to fix the electrical, water, sewage, and solid waste management system. -- JJ Landingin

An unused hospital and one of the hotels in the city have been set up last week as containment areas for coronavirus disease-2019 (Covid-19) patients and persons under investigation and monitoring for the disease, respectively.

In a press briefing March 25, Mayor Benjamin Magalong said the Sto. Niño Hospital along Lower P. Burgos St. is now undergoing preparation and assessment to become a treatment facility for Covid-19 patients.

He said the decision was reached on March 24 after several days of discussions with the owner of the private hospital, who was initially hesitant about the suggestion due to health risks since the facility is located in a community and near a school.

The mayor added among the best practices in dealing with the Covid-19 by different countries is having an establishment or facility used exclusively for treating Covid-19 patients.

He said this way, infections of health workers and spread of the disease will be contained.

A team of police trainees were tapped to clean and disinfect the 36-bed facility while medical experts from the St. Louis University Hospital are assisting in its preparation to become operational soon.

Also last week, the management of Lindi Hotel along Legarda Road offered the establishment for use as quarantine center for PUIs with symptoms and PUMs to help the city augment its resources in managing the Covid situation.

Two other lodging facilities, Starwood Hotel at Kisad Road near the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center and 3BU Hostel at Upper Bonifacio offered to house frontline health workers.

City Administrator Bonifacio dela Peña said the owner of Starwood allowed the free use of its unoccupied rooms by the medical staff of BGHMC after learning of the difficulties they encounter in going home due to the suspension of public transport operation.

On March 24, 3BU hostel announced it is open to doctors, residents, nurses, aides, auxiliaries, medical and radiation technologists, and respiratory therapists from SLU Hospital, Notre Dame de Chartres Hospital, Pines City Doctors Hospital, BGHMC, and City Health Department units.

Magalong said the owner of a five-story apartment in Tuba, Benguet has also offered free use of the facility by frontline health workers.

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