Alternative Quarantine Facilities in the Philippines
With major hospitals in the Philippines facing the threat of the overflowing influx of COVID-19 patients, alternative solutions have been proposed by various sectors to aid our healthcare providers. One possible response that our government is currently pursuing is the conversion of certain public facilities into quarantine centers.
“This will ideally de-congest hospitals and allow more hospital beds to be used by more severe patients with COVID-19,” stated Vince Dizon, the Presidential Adviser for Flagship Programs and Projects. He said that these converted facilities aim “to de-congest our hospitals and also to move patients from communities to facilities like these to control the spread.” As five Metro Manila hospitals have already declared to be at full capacity, these added facilities for housing quarantined patients are very much needed.
Photo Courtesy of DPWH
Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) Forum Tent – Pasay
Status: Conversion Completed on April 7
Finishing 3 days ahead of their projected 10-day timeline, the DPWH has successfully converted the PICC Forum Tent into a functional healthcare facility. With its 294 patient cubicles, the new fully-air conditioned facility aims to house mild to moderate cases of coronavirus patients. 6 nurses’ stations and 6 smart houses outside the tent were also built for the healthcare providers. DPWH Secretary Mark Villar announced that the PNP medical corps will be in charge of the operations of the quarantine facility.
Photo Courtesy of DPWH
Ninoy Aquino Stadium – Malate, Manila
Status: Start of Operations on April 8
The Ninoy Aquino Stadium in the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex can now accept COVID-19 patients with mild to moderate symptoms. Aside from the 112 bed spaces, the facility also followed the WHO guidelines and constructed tent-like structures for nurses with a Nurse Call System. Free food and Internet connection will also be provided to all patients and healthcare staff in the facility. The medical corps of the AFP will oversee the operations for this make-shift quarantine center.
Photo Courtesy of DPWH
World Trade Center – Pasay
Status: To Begin Operations on April 11
With its 10,000-square-meter floor space, the World Trade Center has the capacity for 502 bed spaces. The quarantine facility also includes a nurses’ station at the lobby area, shower cubicles, and portable toilets outside with a direct access point. As stated by Pamela Pascual, president and CEO of WTC Metro Manila, this massive undertaking was a collaboration of different private and government bodies which includes the Ayala Corporation, Makati Development Corporation, and the DPWH. Manila Water and Meralco have both stepped in to assist with the project’s water and electricity requirements, respectively. Several hotels have also sent beddings, linens, and towels to the facility. The AFP-led operations will be catering to mild-symptomed COVID-19 cases.
Photo Courtesy of Richard Viñas (Manila Bulletin)
Philippine Arena – Bulacan
Status: To Begin Operations Next Week
On April 3, the religious group Iglesia ni Cristo proposed the Philippine Arena as a site for quarantined patients. This offer was met by widespread acclaim by the government since, as the world’s largest indoor arena, the Philippine Arena could potentially cater up to 300 patients and 300 health workers under its roof. The arena aims to serve patients from Quezon City, Malabon, Caloocan, Valenzuela, Navotas, and Bulacan.
Aside from the aforementioned converted facilities, the following are being considered as potential quarantine sites:
– Quezon Institute
– Duty-Free Philippines in Parañaque City
– Amoranto Stadium in Quezon City
– Quezon Memorial Circle
– Veterans Memorial Medical Center Complex
– PhilSports Complex in Pasig City
– Food Terminal Inc in Taguig City
– Filinvest Tent in Muntinlupa City
As these alternative healthcare facilities begin catering to COVID-19 patients, their healthcare workers may face certain testing limitations. Without the established laboratory and diagnostic analyzers of a standard hospital, they would need to find other means of monitoring the patients’ status. In unorthodox setups like these converted quarantine centers, point-of-care devices such as the i-STAT Handheld Analyzer could be useful in overseeing the patients’ health. Equipped with a compact structure, flexible testing menu, and a fast turnaround time for lab-quality results, the i-STAT has the potential to become the perfect patient management device for these quarantine facilities.
Know more about how the i-STAT System could help healthcare workers contain the virus in hospitals here. If you’re interested in purchasing the i-STAT system for improved COVID-19 patient management, you can fill out the form below for a quotation proposal.
Featured Photo Courtesy of ABS-CBN News Channel (ANC)
DPWH completes PICC health facility in 7 days – Rappler
LOOK: The Ninoy Aquino Stadium Is Now Officially a Quarantine Center – Spot.ph
World Trade Center Metro Manila turns its massive floor space into a COVID-19 facility – ANC
Philippine Arena to start accepting COVID-19 patients next week – Inquirer
Ninoy Aquino Stadium ready to house COVID-19 patients by midweek – CNN Philippines
LIST: National coronavirus quarantine centers – Rappler