Chapel turned COVID-19 ward amid rising COVID-19 infections in the Philippines; oxygen tanks, health care worker, hospital, isolation facility

A health worker walks around to check on coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patients admitted in the chapel of Quezon City General Hospital turned into a COVID-19 ward amid rising infections two months ago. (REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez)

MANILA, Philippines — Meteo Manila’s COVID-19 alert level may soon be downgraded from 3 to 2 amid the delcine in the number of new infections and the low utilization rate in hospitals, the Department of Health (DOH) said Thursday.

“The possibility of the National Capital Region being deescalated to alert level 2 is very high right now. We have low risk utilization in our hospitals, both ICU (intensive care units) and the ward beds,” Health Undersecretary Ma. Rosario Vergeire told ABS-CBN News Channel’s Rundown.

Vergeire, however, also noted that 12 hospitals still have a high intensive care unit utillization rate, while seven others have high risk ward bed occupancy.

“So having said that, even though our utilization for our ICUs and ward beds are at low risk, we are still not out of the woods yet,” she noted.

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DOH Undersedretary Maria Rosario Vergeire (Image screengrabbed from RTVM)

The average daily attack rate of COVID-19 in Metro Manila, Vergeire pointed out, is at 7.7 per 100,000 people per day.

“Right now, it is at 7.7 already wherein it is slowly going down. When it reaches the 7 Adar mark, we can already say that they are in alert level 2,” she said.

“We need not  be complacent, everybody has to help so that cases will go down until the end of the year,” she stressed.

On October 21, the health official also noted that alert level 2 in Metro Manila is possible in the coming weeks if the decline in COVID cases in the region continues.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government and Metro Manila mayors said they are ready should the region’s alert level be downgraded, Interior Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said on Wednesday.

Metro Manila under alert level 3 until October 31.


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