UP develops software to allow isolated PGH COVID-19 patients to talk to loved ones
University of the Philippines Diliman teams of Professors Pros Naval and Luis Sison set up the terminals' software, according to UP College of Medicine.
UP College of Medicine Facebook
UP develops software to allow isolated PGH COVID-19 patients to talk to loved ones
Kristine Joy Patag (Philstar.com) - April 15, 2020 - 12:42pm

MANILA, Philippines — Recovery from COVID-19 forces infected patients to be isolated from their families, so the University of the Philippines (UP) thought of allowing them to talk to, and see the faces of, their families while in isolation.

The university developed a “tele-bisita” or “e-dalaw” (electronic visitation) software for COVID-19 patients recovering in UP-Philippine General Hospital.

“COVID-19 patients are not just numbers or statistics. They are people who are loved and who love their families. They can now talk to their loved ones while in the hospital,” the UP College of Medicine wrote on Facebook.

The UP College of Medicine Surgical Innovations and Biotechnology Laboratory developed tele-presence computers for use in PGH, UP College of Medicine added.

Teams from UP Diliman and Manila collaborated for the telepresence project. Xavier School alumni Batch ’75 donated computer sets and stands.

A 24 Oras report, meanwhile, quoted Dr. Jonas del Rosario, PGH spokesperson, as saying that patients who were able to talk to their families become happier.

“We saw that our patients lighten up. They are happy, they are relieved,” Del Rosario said in Filipino.

There are four laptops being used in PGH. Sessions run for 30 minutes each patient, the GMA report added.

He, however, explained that the electronic dalaw is only allowed for patients showing mild to moderate symptoms, and not those who are staying at the Intensive Care Unit.

There are currently 101 COVID-19 patients admitted to PGH. 16 are deemed mild cases, while 48 are classified as moderate.

23 have so far recovered and whose conditions have improved from patients under PGH care.

National tally of COVID-19 infections in the country is at 5,223. Death toll is at 335 while 295 have so far recovered.

COVID-19 NOVEL CORONAVIRUS PHILIPPINE GENERAL HOSPITAL UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES
As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: April 29, 2020 - 7:51pm

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.

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

April 29, 2020 - 5:39pm

Quezon City's Task Force Disiplina has been instructed to withdraw its complaint against Michael Rubuia whom city "enforcers" were caught on video beating with sticks over alleged quarantine violations.

The QC government says in the same statement that the enforcers of Task Force Disiplina have been issued show-cause orders for their actions. They may also be put on preventive suspension.

It also says Ruguia will be released to the city's drug rehabilitation center "in view of his positive drug test."

A police report on the April 27 incident did not mention the beating by task force personnel nor that he Ruguia had tested positive for drugs.

More on that incident here: QC to investigate 'local authorities' caught on video beating man lacking face mask

April 28, 2020 - 10:26pm

A 72-year-old Person Deprived of Liberty at the Correctional Institution for Women-Mandaluyong who had tested positive for COVID-19 died on Monday, the Bureau of Corrections says Tuesday.

She was the first confirmed COVID-19 case at the correctional facility and had been hospitalized on April 13 "after experiencing pneumonia symptoms," BuCor says.

"It can be recalled that her admission to the hospital triggered the contact tracing and isolation of those PDL that had contact with her days before she was brought to the hospital," BuCor also says.

Of 130 PDLs tested, 47 have been confirmed to have COVID-19.

A CIW PDL who had been admitted to East Avenue Medical Center on April 13 and who died on April 21 has also been confirmed to have had COVID-19. The results of the test, done on April 14, were only released on Monday.

April 27, 2020 - 2:59pm

Two new confirmed COVID-19 cases were reported in Lipa City on Monday even as the total recoveries jumped to five out of the 26 confirmed cases so far, the Lipa City government said.

Mayor Eric Africa announced that two male patients, ages 78 and 27 years old, tested positive for the virus, raising the city’s total infections to 26 – the most in Batangas province. The Filipino Connection

April 26, 2020 - 3:10pm

Community farms could be a "short cut" to meeting the country's food needs during the COVID-19 pandemic, Caritas Philippines says, citing community farming projects that the Catholic Church in the Philippines is helping.

"The social amelioration program is not efficiently solving our food security problem however we see it as a necessary short-cut solution," Bishop Jose Colin Bagaforo, national director of Caritas Philippines says

"Thus we at NASSA/Caritas Philippines strongly urge our government, especially the Department of Agriculture to start mobilizing farmers at the community level while we still have time."

The Department of Agriculture has said urban and community farming is among its strategies toward food security during the pandemic.

Bagaforo says "our community farms are helping deliver fresh vegetables to families severely affected by work suspension in Iligan, Bayombong and Camarines Sur, while a local farmers' cooperative supported by the diocese of Libmanan in Camarines Norte and the Gratia Plena program of the Diocese of San Jose in Nueva Ecija are supplying thousands of sacks of commercial and organic rice to Luzon provinces."

Backyard gardening programs in Iloilo, Bukidnon, Quezon, Leyte, the Samar provinces, Capiz, Oriental Mindoro and Zambales have also helped ensure food security for farming families, he says.

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