MANILA, Philippines – An unused private hospital will be converted into a treatment facility exclusive for patients with the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Baguio City, while a hotel will be used as a confinement center for patients under investigation (PUI).
This was announced by Mayor Benjamin Magalong on Wednesday, March 25, saying that a review of the best practices in managing the coronavirus pandemic includes having a hospital exclusive to patients with the viral infection.
Magalong said that a week ago, the city government brought up the idea of converting the Sto. Nino Jesus Medical Center on Lower P. Burgos Street into a COVID-19 hospital.
On Wednesday, the hospital’s owners gave their permission for the city government to use the facility for free.
The mayor also assured the owners and residents of Lower P. Burgos Street of their safety once the hospital becomes operational.
A hundred police interns will clean and disinfect the hospital. The Saint Louis University Hospital has been tasked to coordinate the hospital’s retrofitting.
Sto. Nino Jesus Hospital, a 36-bed medical facility, was closed in July 2009.
The city government said in its Facebook page that the St. Louis Hospital team headed by medical director Dr. Paul Adlai Quitiquit will assess the Sto. Nino Jesus Medical Center’s “capacity for intensive care unit, operating room, dialysis, and other needs in terms of equipment, manpower, and supplies.”
It added that “facilities and manpower will be pooled from the various hospitals, the Department of Health (DOH), and the city government.”
Magalong said that the hospital will be ready in less than a week.
Baguio City recorded its first COVID-19 case on Monday, March 23, after a 61-year-old Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) from Italy tested positive.
Two Baguio PUIs are hospitalized while more than a hundred are under home quarantine.
Owners of the two-storey Lindi Hotel on Legarda Road offered the use of the hotel for free for PUIs, Magalong said.
Lindi Hotel is 600 meters from the Baguio General Hospital and the City Health Center. It is already being prepared to be converted into a facility for PUIs.
Two hotels are also offering their rooms for health worker frontliners in Baguio.
Starwood Hotel has offered for free one floor for doctors and nurses of nearby Baguio General Hospital.
Another five-story hotel in Tuba has said medical frontliners can use its rooms, Magalong said. – Rappler.com