PH health workers with COVID-19 climb to 1,336; number of doctors nearing 500


Posted at Apr 28 2020 05:19 PM

Hospital frontliners including a nurse and security guards wear personal protective equipment, as they man the entrance of the emergency room at Gat Andres Bonifacio Memorial Medical Center in Tondo, Manila on March 24, 2020. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News/file

MANILA - The number of Filipino health care workers afflicted with the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has climbed to 1,336, the Department of Health (DOH) said Tuesday.

The sum includes 493 doctors, 507 nurses, 74 nursing assistants, 47 medical technologists, 28 radio technologists, 11 midwives and 11 respiratory therapists, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during a televised briefing. 

The other 165 coronavirus cases include dentists, barangay health workers and administrative aides, she added.

As of Tuesday, 29 health care workers, including 22 doctors, have succumbed to COVID-19, Vergeire said.

To date, the Philippines has recorded 7,958 coronavirus infections, of whom 530 died and 975 recovered.

The World Health Organization earlier sounded the alarm on the number of Filipino health care workers getting sick of COVID-19.

Dr. Abdi Mahamud, COVID-19 incident manager for Western Pacific, said the Philippines could be considered an “outlier,” with health care workers accounting for 13 percent of total infections, compared to the regional average of 2 to 3 percent.

“We are working very closely with the ministry of health to determine the reasons why the Philippines has a high percentage,” he said.