MANILA, Philippines– Accepting the responsibility of helping the University of the Philippines (UP) community in this time of crisis, Palma Hall opened its doors as an isolation area for suspected and probable coronavirus cases in the UP Diliman area.
The opening comes with the approval of the Department of Health, after Palma Hall passed its second inspection on Wednesday, May 13. (READ: Para sa bayan: U.P lends expertise, resources in fight vs coronavirus)
Now dubbed the “Kanlungang Palma sa Panahon ng Pandemya (KaPPP),” the classroom building complex will be a temporary isolation unit for suspected coronavirus patients who exhibit mild symptoms and are unable to be quarantined at home while waiting for the results of their swab tests.
Initially envisioned to house 50 beds, Kanlungang Palma will now be accommodating 26 patients at most since only one person can be accommodated per room. Part of the UP Health Service have been deployed to manage the facility strictly following DOH guidelines.
To bolster the capacity of its facility and accommodate referrals who have not undergone testing, it has also set up a swabbing booth in coordination with the Philippine Genome Center, which will perform the RT-PCR test on the samples collected.
While the isolation area is designated for patients from the UPD community, those coming from nearby barangays may also be considered if they cannot be accommodated in other quarantine facilities within Quezon City.
Kanlungang Palma, however, will only admit patients between 18 and 60 years old who have no other existing illnesses such as uncontrolled hypertension, diabetes or immunosuppressed conditions. Pregnant patients and walks-in will not be accommodated as well.
Referring barangays or hospitals must first call the UP Health Service Emergency Room at at 8981-8500 local 111 for initial screening and instructions. Kanlungang Palma accepts admissions from Monday to Sunday, from 8am to 5pm.
The College of Social Sciences and Philosophy led the charge in establishing Kanlungang Palma as early as April 17, with the approval of the UPD COVID-19 Task Force.
The facility was also made in coordination with Act as One PH, a group of UP alumni and supporters, who helped provide beds, washing machines, dedicated mobile phones and minor medical equipment among others for Kanlungang Palma
Using funds from Act as One PH and other UP supporters, Kanlungang Palma will be in operation until July. – Rappler.com