“We don’t want positive patients to remain at home because it’s possible that they could infect other members of the household. That’s why we’re encouraging them to go to medical facilities,” Mayor Francis Zamora told reporters.
STAR/ File
San Juan ready for spike in COVID-19 cases – Zamora
Neil Jayson Servallos (The Philippine Star) - July 16, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Medical facilities managed by the San Juan City government are still at 50 percent bed capacity for coronavirus disease 2019 patients and ready for the possible increase in COVID-19 cases, Mayor Francis Zamora announced yesterday.

He urged city residents infected with the virus but opted to undergo home quarantine to seek treatment in hospitals to control the transmission of the virus.

“We don’t want positive patients to remain at home because it’s possible that they could infect other members of the household. That’s why we’re encouraging them to go to medical facilities,” Zamora told reporters.

Apart from private hospitals, there are three medical facilities catering to COVID-19 patients in the city. These are the San Juan Medical Center and its quarantine facilities at the Kalinga Center and San Juan National High School.

Zamora said instead of forcing patients to transfer to facilities, they would provide families with incentives such as free healthcare services, medicine, food, internet connection and P3,000 cash assistance.

He said they would be more considerate to families who have big and less crowded houses.

“If they have a room with a toilet that only a COVID-19 patient can use without the risk of transmitting the virus, then we can consider that,” Zamora said. “But if the house is crowded, the patient needs to be isolated in a treatment facility.”

San Juan has 198 active cases of COVID-19, but not all of them are in hospitals.

The city health office has been tasked to trace the patients on home quarantine.

While the local government could not cite occupancy figures in private hospitals such as the Cardinal Santos Medical Center, Zamora said the city-run medical facilities have 50-percent bed capacity.

The city council has approved an ordinance, increasing fines for violators of health protocols such as wearing of face masks, social distancing and reporting COVID-19 patients at home.

Zamora said violators would be fined up to P5,000 and penalized with up to three months in prison.

As of July 13, there were 558 cases of COVID-19 in San Juan with 47 deaths and 313 recoveries.                 

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