Pasig Mayor Vico Sotto said the city government organized temporary holding areas for moderate COVID-19 cases being turned away by hospitals due to a lack of beds.
These will serve as extensions of emergency rooms consisting of five beds, with its own doctors, nurses, medicines, and basic equipment and supplies, Sotto said. Health and safety protocols are strictly implemented.
The holding areas will be operational by Thursday afternoon, Sotto said. More beds will be added in the coming days.
"These are very difficult times...Puno ang mga Ospital. Ang hirap makahanap ng bakante sa ospital, kahit sa mga kalapit nating lungsod/probinsya. Minsan hindi na makahinga ang pasyente, pero higit sa 2, 3 oras naghahanap ng mapagdadalhan ang ambulansya natin," Sotto posted using his Twitter account.
"Ito po ay isang bahagi sa tugon natin sa matinding problema. Kukulangin pa rin siguro, pero makakatulong kahit papaano: nag set up tayo ng temporary holding area na parang extension ng ER. Para po ito sa mga moderate cases na hindi pa kayang tanggapin ng mga ospital," he added.
Sotto extended his thaks to the city's health care frontliners.
"Salamat, mga healthcare frontliners, dahil hindi kayo sumusuko. Special mention to our Pasig Emergency Unit for stepping up and taking on this new task. Malayo sa ideyal ang mga pangyayari ngayon, pero kakayanin natin ito," he said.
The Philippines has been recording a high number of new daily cases since the Greater Manila Area was placed under enhanced community quarantine starting April. On April 2, the country recorded more than 15,000 cases, a new all-time high.
Frontliner groups who called for a timeout last August said 2021's surge was worse than last year's situation, with hospitals filled to the brim, forcing patients to seek out 7 to 8 medical institutions before finding a slot.