City isolation beds increase to 654

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The city continues to increase the capacity of its quarantine and isolation units to ensure it can handle the possible surge in the dreaded Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases following the conduct of aggressive contact tracing and expanded and targeted testing among identified members of the vulnerable sectors of the community.

City Health Officer Dr. Rowena Galpo stated that the city’s 6 quarantine and isolation facilities have a total bed capacity of 654, way above the prescribed standards of the health department.

She added that the occupancy rate of the city’s quarantine and isolation facilities is around 36.54 percent where only 239 beds had been occupied, 134 beds remain to be unavailable, 95 beds at the city isolation center are undergoing renovation while 85 beds are ready for occupancy.

Among the city’s quarantine and isolation facilities include the former Sto. Niño Hospital with a 233-bed capacity; The Baguio Teachers Camp Roxas Hall with 116 beds, the Baguio Teachers Camp Superintendent’s Quarters and Hernandez Hall with 112 beds, V dorm 1 with 80 beds, V dorm 3 with 53 beds and Ferionni apartments with 60 beds.

In terms of the available ward, isolation and intensive care unit (ICU) beds in the various government and private hospitals in the city, there are already 32 occupied ward beds while 45 remain available for occupancy by symptomatic patients.

Moreover, there are also 102 isolation beds that are occupied and only 16 beds are available.

For ICU beds, 14 are already occupied while 12 are still available for occupancy.

On the other hand, there are only 2 mechanical ventilators that are in use while there are 16 that remain available for patients that need the same.

The local government continues to closely work with the national task force on anti-COVID 2019 for the expenses that will be incurred in the use of the quarantine and isolation facilities to ensure that the local government’s resources will not be depleted in the ongoing COVID response.

City Administrator Bonifacio dela Peña said that the contractor of the ongoing repair and upgrading of the former Sto. Nino Hospital to increase its bed capacity to at least 400 the soonest is set to turnover additional floors that will be ready for occupancy by the middle of this month to further boost the available isolation beds.

He stipulated that the contractor is given up to the middle of next month to complete the project although efforts are being done to ensure that there will be more beds that will be ready for occupancy every week to cater to the increasing number of patients being isolated in the facility following their positive COVID test results.

The city was able to acquire some P12 million from the public works department for the repair and upgrading of the city isolation center as part of the government’s effort to prepare local governments to be ready to handle the surge in COVID cases in their areas of jurisdiction.