Chinese medical experts find Philippines at risk of inability to cut COVID-19 source

Chinese medical experts find Philippines at risk of inability to cut COVID-19 source
In this April 11, 2020 photo, the Chinese medical expert team visits The Medical City in Pasig City and meets with main experts of the hospital.
Chinese Embassy

MANILA, Philippines — A week after arriving in the Philippines, the 12-member Chinese medical expert team found that the country is facing a risk of being unable to cut off the source of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

According to a report from CCTV Asia Pacific, the Chinese medical experts came into this conclusion after visiting six hospitals in the Philippines and held video conferences with local medical experts.

Weng Shangeng, head of the Chinese medical team, told CCTV Asia Pacific that they suggested the Philippines should establish a "Fangcang" hospital as soon as possible.

China's Wuhan City, where the infectious virus originated, developed "Fangcang" shelter hospitals in response to the coronavirus pandemic. These makeshift hospitals are intended for large-scale medical isolation.

"Because of limited beds and testing capacity in the Philippines, many of the COVID-19 patients are still quarantined at home," Weng told CCTV Asia Pacific.

The head of the Chinese medical team noted that establishing a makeshift hospital for COVID-19 patients is a fundamental measure to increase recovery rates and reduce infection rates.

"In this way, mild cases can be admitted to the hospital for observation so as to prevent the mild cases from becoming severe cases," Weng said.

Following their visit to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM), the Chinese team also noted the Philippines' need to improve its virus detection capacity.

RITM, the country's largest COVID-19 detection facility, currently has two laboratories that can run 700 tests every day.

"That is to say, if they work at full capacity, the capacity can now reach 1,400 each day. In addition, they are building a third laboratory, which is expected to reach 2,100 a day in the short term testing ability," the Chinese team's head said.

Several large venues in Metro Manila and nearby areas are set to be converted into quarantine facilities. 

Earlier this month, National Task Force COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. inspected the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Manila, as well as the World Trade Center and the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City. These three venues are expected to house around 2,000 patients.

Other venues to be converted into quarantine facilities are Quezon City Institue, Duty-Free Philippines in Parañaque, Amoranto Stadium in Quezon City, Quezon Memorial Circle, Veterans Memorial Medical Center complex, PhilSports Complex in Pasig City, Food Terminal Inc. in Taguig City, Filinvest Tent in Muntinlupa and Philippine Arena in Bulacan. — Patricia Lourdes Viray

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As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: March 27, 2021 - 8:09pm

Photo shows members of the Philippine National Police deployed in Manila amid COVID-19 threat. The STAR/Edd Gumban

President Rodrigo Duterte on March 16, 2020 declares an enhanced community quarantine over all of mainland Luzon, an expansion of an earlier general community quarantine over the National Capital Region.

The entire National Capital Region—16 cities and a municipality—is under community quarantine from March 15 to April 14, which means the enforcement of social distancing measures like letting fewer people on public transportation, reduced store hours, and the possibiity of curfews.

According to a memorandum issued by the Palace on Saturday, March 14, the quarantine means that "movement of people shall be limited to accessing basic necessities and work; and uniformed personnel and quarantine officers shall be present at border points."

Travel restrictions in and out of the capital will also be implemented.

March 27, 2021 - 8:09pm

A labor group says another lockdown will never resolve rising COVID-19 cases in the Philippines after the government announced that Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan and Rizal are placed under the enhanced community quarantine starting Monday.

“The Duterte government seems to be deliberate in focusing its efforts in imposing quarantine and lockdown measures instead of addressing the rising cases of COVID-19 and the worsening state of the pandemic through medical solutions and scientific approach,” says Defend Jobs Philippines.



March 27, 2021 - 7:06pm

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque says the implementation of enhanced community quarantine is meant to slow down the increase of COVID-19 cases, so hospitals and health workers will not be overwhelmed.

March 27, 2021 - 6:37pm

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque announces that Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan and Rizal are placed under enhanced community quarantine starting Monday, March 29.

January 19, 2021 - 6:04pm

Tuguegarao City will be placed under enhanced community quarantine from January 20 to 29 due to the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the city.

Cagayan Gov. Manuel Mamba approved the request of Tuguegarao Mayor Jefferson Soriano to place the city under ECQ for 10 days.

According to the Cagayan Provincial Information Office, the city currently has 246 active cases.


Posted by Cagayan Provincial Information Office on Tuesday, 19 January 2021
April 29, 2020 - 7:51pm

Batangas, one of the provinces hardest hit by the novel coronavirus, has reported no new cases of the disease for two consecutive days.

The provincial DOH Office says the number of COVID-19 cases in the province stood at 91 with no new cases as of Wednesday afternoon.

Lipa City has the most cases with 26, followed by Batangas City (21) and Nasugbu (11).

Tanauan City has the fourth most cases with eight, followed by Bauan (5) and Alitagtag (3). Cuenca and Sto. Tomas City had two cases each, while the municipalities of Calaca, Lemery, Lian, Lobo, Mabini, Mataas na Kahoy, Padre Garcia, San Jose, San Juan, San Pascual and Taal had one case each, respectively. — The Filipino Connection

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