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Manila opens new quarantine center

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Manila opened a new quarantine facility for coronavirus disease-2019 patients at T. Paez High School on May 26.

The new isolation facility has a 41-bed capacity and is equipped with electric fans and air conditioner units.

Photo courtesy of: Manila Public Information Office

Other completed quarantine facilities include the Delpan Quarantine Facility and the ones at Araullo High School and Tondo High School. These facilities can cater to up to 200 patients.

Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso said more facilities will be built at Tondo Sports Complex, Patricia Covered Court, Del Pilar High School, P. Gomez High School, Arellano High School, Dapitan Sports Complex, and Bacood Elementary School.

Domagoso earlier said that they are setting up more isolation facilities in preparation for the expected surge in COVID-19 cases with the implementation of the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) or the general community quarantine (GCQ).

The city government is aiming to provide up to 500 beds in these quarantine facilities for the city’s COVID-19 patients, he added.

The Manila mayor said they are ready for when the city is placed under GCQ as they have enough supplies and resources, not only to build more isolation facilities, but also to continue conducting their “aggressive” mass testing and contact tracing efforts.

“So far, with the numbers, as we progress, so far yung kapasidad kaya pa (in terms of capacity, we can get by). But… blunders may arise suddenly, and we are aware of that,” he told reporters.

Data from the city government showed that over 50,000 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and rapid tests have been conducted for the city’s COVID-19 patients as of Saturday, May 23.

A total of 7,481 swab tests and 43,067 have been performed by the city government’s health workers for probable and suspect COVID-19 patients in Manila.

The city government is also building its own COVID-19 testing laboratory at the Sta. Ana Hospital, which is the sole district hospital in Manila assigned to handle COVID-19 cases and where the Manila Infectious Disease Control Center (MIDCC) is located.

Domagoso reiterated that he is in favor of implementing GCQ in Manila to prevent thousands of residents from losing their jobs.

“It’s going to be challenging, but we have to. We need to go on with our lives, and I think the people of Manila [are] smart enough to take care of themselves because nakita na rin ng mga taga-Maynila kung gaano kadelikado ang COVID-19 (those from Manila have seen how dangerous COVID-19 is),” he said.

“Kailangan dahan-dahan (We should do it slowly) so we can adapt to the new normal and social norms,” he added.

However, the Manila mayor said they will comply with the guidelines set by the Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) because they want to” synchronize” their action plan with that of the national government.

As of Saturday, May 23, there are 1,203 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country’s capital with 321 recoveries and 95 deaths.

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