ILOILO CITY – The local government here is pushing to convert the St. Therese-MTCC Hospital (STMH) into a Level 1 category hospital to address the high health care utilization rate (HCUR) in the metropolis.
The former tertiary hospital that was lent to the city government at the start of the pandemic is now being utilized as a quarantine facility for mild to moderate cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
“We are asking the Department of Health (DOH) for the approval of this proposal. We have to move fast because the virus, especially the Delta variant, is also swift in infecting people and claiming lives,” said Iloilo City Mayor Jerry P. Treñas in a statement through the Public Information Office (PIO) on Thursday.
Dr. Roland Jay Fortuna, Iloilo City COVID-19 focal person, said a Level 1 hospital, although it has no intensive care unit (ICU) capability, can admit moderate cases.
“This is just so we can augment the hospitals here that have overflowing capacities due to the surge in cases,” he added.
As of Aug. 1, the health care utilization rate in the city has been classified as high risk based on the health system capacity monitoring of the Department of Health Western Visayas Center for Health Development (DOH-WV CHD).
Its 95 Covid-19 ward beds are 81.05 percent occupied, 100 percent of the 108 ICU beds, and 78.09 percent of the 251 isolation beds while 64.20 percent of the 81 mechanical ventilators are being utilized, based on the report.
In a previous interview, the mayor said most of the cases admitted in city-based hospitals are from outside of the metropolis.
Due to the lack of ICU facilities, the province also refers its severe cases to the city.
Meanwhile, 50 beds of the STMH are being readied for the possible Delta variant Covid-19 cases.
It currently has in its care five positive close contacts of the city’s first Delta variant case and 13 other confirmed Covid-19 patients.
Apart from increasing the health care capacity, the local government also raised its target population coverage for the Covid-19 vaccination from 450,00 to 525,000 to include those who are working but living outside the city. This is the city’s preventive measure to stop the infectious Delta variant.
As of Aug. 3, a total of 160,922 individuals have received their first dose, and 111,295 were given their second dose.
It recorded the highest number of vaccinees with 15,718 individuals on July 26. (PNA)
Credit belongs to : www.pna.gov.ph