New DOH Usec Vega is point person for Metro Manila COVID-19 critical care capacity

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 06 2020 05:02 PM

MANILA - Newly appointed Health Undersecretary Leopold Vega will become the "point person" for determining the critical care capacity of hospitals for COVID-19 cases, Malacañang announced Monday.

Vega will be the incident commander among Metro Manila hospitals, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque and Department of Health spokesperson Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said.

"Siya na po ang magiging point person sa pag-determine ng critical care utilization and hospital care and capacity," Roque said of Vega's new role.

(He will be the point person in determining the critical care utilization, hospital care, and capacity.)

Vega, chief of the Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) in Davao City, was named as health undersecretary for special concerns last month just as Health Secretary Francisco Duque faced questions to his leadership of the agency's pandemic response.

The development comes as Malacañang belied rumors that there are no more available hospital beds in Metro Manila for COVID-19 cases.

"Nililinaw po namin na iyong mga kumakalat na fake news na ubos na raw po ang mga hospital beds ng ating mga hospital, hindi po iyan totoo," Roque said.

(We want to clarify the fake news that there are no more available hospital beds. Those are not true.)

At present, the critical care utilization for Metro Manila is at 63 percent or at "moderate risk", Roque said.

Metro Manila remains under general community quarantine until July 15.