MANILA - Health workers at the St. Luke's Medical Center (SLMC) can now get essential items for free after the hospital opened a special "make-shift store" for them on Friday, as frontliners continue to struggle with the influx of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients.
Among the items SLMC health workers can get for free in the "Care Store" are canned goods, bread, fruits, and beverages.
"This make-shift store aims to provide the hospital’s frontliners and their families FREE grocery items, as a token of appreciation for their hard work and selfless efforts to continuously provide patient care amid the COVID-19 crisis," the hospital said in a statement
Each health worker is given some "care points" every week which they can use to purchase products in the special store, SLMC said.
"This is the least we could do for all that you do for our patients," the statement read.
"Thank you for your commitment to fight and pursue selfless service amidst the COVID-19 crisis," it said.
The Care Store at the Henry Sy, Sr. Auditorium in SLMC, Taguig opened Friday morning, while a similar make-shift grocery for health workers will open in the hospital's Quezon City branch on April 7.
The stores are open daily from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m., and from 12 noon to 4 p.m.
The hospital earlier said that its 2 branches were unable to accept more COVID-19 patients for confinement due to overcapacity.
"Both hospitals have already exceeded maximum capacity and admitting more COVID-19 patients will seriously impact our ability to deliver the critical level of care and attention patients need at this time,” it said.
The Health sector has called on the government to send aid for health workers who are heavily exposed to the highly-contagious virus, that has infected 2,633 patients in the country.