Baguio ramps-up monitoring of home isolated COVID patients

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The city government will soon come out with a ‘robust’ digital monitoring telemedicine-type system where volunteer  doctors  could interact with coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) patients who are under home isolation according to a local official.

The move is part of the city’s continuous efforts to find ways on taking care of and monitoring the situation of those under home quarantine as it grapples with the ongoing pandemic and its attendant variants.

Health Services Office  chief Dr. Rowena Galpo said 80 percent of the 4,000 covid-19 cases in the Summer Capital or approximately 3,000 are currently under home quarantine.

In the virtual management committee meeting, October 4, of city officials led by Mayor Benjamin Magalong, Engr. Felipe Puzon, City Mayor’s Office chief of staff,  said the Management Information Technology Division  is developing a digital tool that would have a complete system than the ‘BANTAI COVID’ program of Quezon City where it is patterned on.

The platform will allow volunteer doctors to check on how the patients are doing, give them instructions on what to do while on quarantine, offer them encouragement, including  act as a monitoring system of covid patients.

Galpo said the digital tool will be a great help to the city’s monitoring capabilites that is currently spearheaded by the Barangay Health Emergency Response Teams (BHERTS) whose number, she says, is not enough to conduct regular monitoring of the thousands of those under home isolation despite doing their very best.

“Many of those under home quarantine are entire families. Our personnel conducting swabbing, monitoring and BHERTS duties are being overwhelmed,” Galpo said.

DILG Baguio Office head Evelyn Trinidad disclosed  that 338 individuals were recently trained to perform as BHERTS to bolster the city’s monitoring efforts.

Also, Briccio Domondon of the Special Services Division said the Mayor has ordered the distribution of a template  to the city’s barangay officials to be used as a daily monitoring form on covid patients in their respective areas to be submitted regularly.

City administrator Bonifacio Dela Pena appealed to the public to do what they can in helping one another during this pandemic  since ‘the government cannot do it alone’.—Gaby B. Keith

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