Compiled by the OpinYon Research Team
Six weeks into the general community quarantine (GCQ) effected in Laguna, medical centers are now feeling the brunt of the sudden spike of COVID-19 cases in the province.
While the number of COVID-19 cases in Laguna — 2,039 confirmed and 998 active cases as of July 23 — still looks manageable, there is a possibility health centers in the province could just be overwhelmed by this.
In fact, because of the surge, some private hospitals have already reached maximum patient accommodation in the last few days.
Private Medical Facilities
In a statement issued by Department of Health (DOH) Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire on July 14, included in the list of hospitals that reached their full capacity are the Qualimed Medical Center in Santa Rosa City, the University of Perpetual Help-Jose G. Tamayo Memorial Medical Center in Biñan City, and Westlake Medical Center in San Pedro City.
On July 20, Calamba Medical Center announced the allocated beds for COVID-19 patients in its Intensive Care Unit (ICU) were all occupied.
These hospitals, incidentally, were located in the first and second district of Laguna where the bulk of COVID-19 cases in the province are located.
Public Hospitals Closed
Exacerbating the situation is the closure of some government-owned medical facilities in the province due to the effects of COVID-19.
The Rural Health Facility (RHU) of San Pedro City’s Jose L. Amante Emergency Hospital, the Ospital ng Biñan, and the Santa Rosa Community Hospital have declared two-week suspension of operations this month after some of their staff were confirmed or exposed to the virus.
The SRCH has even extended its closure to up to August 2, pending the results of tests conducted to other staff suspected of being exposed to COVID-19. (See news brief on page 2.)
Lagunenses are now worried that the successive closure of hospitals would overwhelm local governments’ response to the pandemic, as officials scramble for new isolation spaces for the rising number of COVID-19 cases.