MANILA - A group of private hospitals on Tuesday called on government to augment its workforce as COVID-19 cases continued to rise.
Members of the Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines Inc. have "enough beds" but not enough health workers, said its president Jose Rene de Grano.
"Any help actually will suffice. We have very limited healthcare workers right now, we can’t get any additional nurses. Usually government will send augmentation personnel to government facilities," he told ANC's Headstart.
"The private hospitals have enough beds but the problem is we don’t have enough healthcare workers, it’s very limited."
He advised persons with COVID-19 symptoms to seek assistance first from their barangay health emergency response team before going to the hospital as only those who experience moderate to severe cases would be accommodated.
"Contact your barangay emergency response team and they will make the necessary coordination with different hospitals so they don’t have to wait at the emergency room," he said.
"We’re trying to decongest the hospitals by giving preference to patients with moderate to severe symptoms."
The health department on Tuesday said intensive-care unit beds at 14 out of 21 hospitals in Metro Manila is on a "critical" level or "almost 100 percent," while isolation beds are at "almost 80 percent."
The capital region will ease its quarantine level to modified enhanced community quarantine if its healthcare utilization drops to 60 percent, the DOH said.
The Philippines as of Monday tallied 8,355 more coronavirus infections, taking its total to 803,398 cases since the pandemic began.
It is expected to reach 1 million cases by end of the month, according to independent research group OCTA.