CAPTION: Video courtesy of PTV
Migrant workers who return from abroad while sick can be brought to hospitals instead of quarantine facilities, an official said on Friday, after an OFW reportedly died while in mandatory COVID-19 isolation.
The families of returning ill OFWs should coordinate with hospitals so they could be transferred "point-to-point" from the airport, said COVID-19 treatment "czar" and Health Undersecretary Leopoldo Vega.
"Talaga pong on humanitarian reasons, dapat point-to-point ‘yan. Kailangan makipag-ugnayan sila sa hospital na sunduin agad sa airports at ilalagay sa hospital kung saan sila nakipag-ugnayan," he said in a televised press briefing.
"It has to be point-to-point, lalo na ‘yong mga kasong ganoon nangangailangan ng hospitalization. Pumapayag naman ang BoQ (Bureau of Quarantine) non," added the official.
(On humanitarian reasons, that should be point-to-point. They should coordinate with hospitals so they could be fetched immediately from the airport and admitted to the hospital where they had coordinated. It has to be point-to-point, especially for cases that need hospitalization. The BoQ allows that.)
A media report this week said cancer-stricken OFW Rachelle Sagonoy died on the same day she was set to go home from her COVID-19 quarantine, after pleas for her transfer to a hospital were supposedly rejected due to the lack of available rooms.
The Philippines is battling an uptick in coronavirus infections linked to the Delta COVID-19 variant, which has raised the healthcare utilization nationwide.
About 75 percent of ICU beds were in use as of Aug. 25, while around 68 percent of ward beds were occupied, according to the health department's online tracker.
The agency has confirmed some 1.89 million COVID-19 cases and 32,000 deaths.