900,000 safety gear for virus fighters coming this April: health dept

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 01 2020 09:56 AM | Updated as of Apr 01 2020 10:50 AM

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The Philippines in April will receive some 900,000 units of protective gear for medical workers scrambling to contain the coronavirus epidemic, the health department said Wednesday.

An initial batch of 200,000 personal protective equipment will arrive in the Philippines between April 1 and 6, while another 700,000 units will be delivered through April 24, said Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire.

A shortage of PPEs earlier forced some medical workers to make do with improvised safety gear.

The Philippine General Hospital, one of the government's COVID-19 referral centers, said its current stash of protective gear might only last for a week or 2, depending on the influx of patients.

The health department said it was also eyeing the purchase of about 1,500 ventilators to help COVID-19 patients.

The Philippines as of Tuesday confirmed 88 deaths out of its total 2,084 cases of the novel coronavirus. The tally could continue to climb following the recent delivery of test kits and the accreditation of additional screening laboratories, said the health department.

Metro Manila and the entire Luzon, home to about half of the country's 100 million people, is under lockdown until April 12 to contain the pandemic.

DZMM, April 1, 2020