MANILA — Several health facilities were damaged in three regions hit by Typhoon Rolly and Typhoon Ulysses in the last few weeks, according to the Department of Health.
“Nakapagtamo ng pinsala ang health facilities sa Cordillera, Cagayan Valley at Central Luzon regions,” Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said during a virtual briefing on Monday.
(Health facilities in Cordillera, Cagayan Valley and Central Luzon regions were damaged.)
Among those reported damaged as of Sunday are:
- Nueva Ecija: Dr. Paulino J. Garcia Memorial Research and Medical Center and the Mega Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Center
- Bataan Treatment and Rehab Center
- Isabela: Palanan District Hospital and Palanan Rural health Unit
- Cagayan: Alfonso Ponce Enrile Memorial District Hospital, 2 regional health units and 14 barangay health stations
- Benguet: Palasaan Barangay Health Station
“As of 8pm last night, we have noted that Cagayan’s 5 quarantine facilities were affected and they had to transfer the patients to evacuation areas although isolated or hiwalay naman ang mga pasyenteng ito,” she added. There were also those who were allowed to return home to continue their isolation there.
“Patuloy po nating minomonitor ang lagay ng iba pang health facilities na naapektuhan ng bagyo upang matugunan ang pangangailangan nila,” Vergeire said.
(We continue to monitor the other health facilities affected by the typhoons to tend to their needs.)
Asked if there are enough funds to repair the damaged buildings, Vergeire said the government always has quick response funds that can be accessed.
She said P29 million worth of medicines, hygiene kits and COVID-19 response supplies have already been released by the DOH Central Office while P18.2 million worth of supplies came from the regional offices. Another P26.8 million worth of supplies were placed in Region 1, 2, 3, 4A, 4B, 5, 8, National Capital Regio, and Cordillera Administrative Region.
COVID-19 IN EVACUATION CENTERS
DOH acknowledged that a surge in COVID-19 cases was likely after many Filipinos were forced to stay in evacuation centers due to recent typhoons.
DOH has since deployed safety officers in evacuation areas to enforce health standards, Vergeire said.
“The government is doing everything it can so that we can prevent this kind of situation to happen,” she said.
Vergeire said they already received reports of people not wearing masks, which is why they intensified their efforts, prompting even Secretary Francisco Duque III to visit evacuation centers while the DOH distributed masks and alcohol.
She said they have advised local government units to enforce compliance of health standards.
Besides having health emergency response teams, the DOH will also deploy teams from the National Center for Mental Health for psychosocial support for evacuees.
Health and safety officers are also advised to look out for water and food borne diseases that may spread in the evacuation centers.