BARMM works to ensure COVID-19 cases in region manageable - minister

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 18 2020 04:05 PM

MANILA - The Bangsamoro Administrative Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) on Saturday said it continues to provide medical assistance to residents affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Naguib Sinarimbo, BARMM Minister of Interior and Local Government, said regional programs to fight COVID-19 include providing medical aid to residents in need under the Ayudang Medical para sa Bangsamoro or AMBAG.

"Mayroon tayong memorandum of agreement sa mga ospital na nandito para bigyan sila ng pondo para lahat ng mga kababayan nating maospital dahil sa COVID puwede nilang i-charge doon, bayaran buong expenses connected sa COVID ang kaso," Sinarimbo said during the Laging Handa press briefing.

(We have a memorandum of agreement with hospitals that we have funds so that those who are hospitalized for COVID can be covered, their expenses paid through that fund.)

BARMM has so far 272 suspected and 9 confirmed COVID-19 cases. It has recorded 3 deaths and 4 recoveries.

One patient is still confined in the hospital and another one is under home quarantine.

"Sa pangkalahatan, stable naman 'yung numbers natin so far. Ayaw nating magkumpiyansa dito dahil unang problem wala pang malawakang testing. Gusto pa rin nating makasigurado na ang numero ay manageable," he said.

(All in all, our numbers are so far stable. We don't want to be complacent here because the problem is we still don't have mass testing. We still want to make sure that the numbers are manageable.)

Sinarimbo added that BARMM Chief Minister Al Haj Murad Ibrahim signed a MOA with the Cotabato Regional Medical Center last Monday to hand them over the funds to purchase laboratory equipment.

This would speed up accreditation of the hospital as a COVID-19 testing center, he said.

With cases expected to increase when testing begins, Sinarimbo said they are now building a medical facility at the Cotabato Sanitarum Hospital where symptomatic coronavirus patients will be admitted.

Another quarantine facility for asymptomatic COVID-19 patients is also in the works.