ILOILO – With the shortage of rooms and beds in district hospitals due to the rising number of dengue cases in this province, private hospitals in Iloilo City expressed willingness to take in “spillover” patients.
As of 8 a.m. yesterday there were 851 dengue patients admitted in 12 provincial government-run hospitals, higher than their total bed capacity of 615, according to the Provincial Health Office (PHO).
Gov. Arthur Defensor Jr. sought the help of private hospitals as dengue cases rose to 5,435 with 20 deaths. The cases were 901 percent higher than those recorded from Jan. 1 to July 6, 2018 (543 cases with three deaths).
“They are willing to accommodate dengue patients from the province in case there is a spillover. In case of emergency, they are willing to expand (their capacity),” said Defensor yesterday.
The PHO released the latest dengue statistics as Defensor met with administrators and directors of private hospitals in the city.
Private rooms in district hospitals were converted to wards just to accommodate more patients, the governor told them.
Present at the meeting were Sister Arcelita Sarnillo and Dr. Henry Gonzales of St. Paul’s Hospital Iloilo; Dr. Elmer Pedregosa of Iloilo Mission Hospital; Dr. Ludovico Jurao and Elmie Jude Labarejos of Iloilo Doctor’s Hospital; Edwin Magsino, Dr. James Woo and Argie Arenga of QualiMed Hospital – Iloilo; Dr. Danilo Encarnacion and Dr. Ray Alindong of Metro Iloilo Hospital and Medical Center; Joaquin Sapul Jr. of The Medical City – Iloilo; and Johnny Tolentino and Mark Lester Opiña of Medicus Medical Center.
Defensor assured them that Iloilo province’s indigent patients are covered by PhilHealth.
The provincial government and the national government can also subsidize other charges not covered by PhilHealth, stressed Defensor.
According to PHO’s Dr. Maria Socorro Colmenares Quiñon, there was a sharp jump in dengue cases during the June 29 to July 6 period (27th morbidity week) – 1,129 cases up from the 4,306 cases recorded as of June 29.
PHO’s latest data also showed children 10 years old and below to be most vulnerable to dengue – 2,285 cases.
Other age groups with dengue cases were the following:
* 11 to 20 years old – 2,056
* 31 to 40 years old – 567
* 41 years old and above – 191
* 31 to 40 years old – 189
* less than one year old – 147
PHO is now recommending the conduct of “preventive residual spraying” especially in schools, citing an administrative order from the Department of Health (DOH).
“Two to three times a year maga-conduct preventive spraying. Dapat ginapundohan sang schools,” said Quiñon.
But she stressed the need to cancel classes even just for a day for the spraying.
“Although safe ang bulong nga gina-spray, still gina-advise naton nga untaton ang klase,” said Quiñon.
Meanwhile, the provincial government requested for tents from the Philippine Red Cross to be put up in district hospitals.
More nurses and doctors will also be added to cater to the influx of patients.
The provincial government also continuously receives folding beds donated by private partners.
On July 9, Tommy Que of Iloilo Supermart donated 90 folding beds while Metro Iloilo Bulk Water turned over 50 folding beds yesterday.
Metro Iloilo Bulk Water also pledged to donate four tents to the province.
On July 5, Defensor issued an executive order placing the entire province under a dengue outbreak.
As of yesterday, the 10 municipalities with the most number of dengue cases were the following:
* Pototan – 492 cases with three deaths
* Passi City – 398 cases with one death
* Concepcion – 315 cases with four deaths
* Sara – 309 cases with one death
* Calinog – 262 cases
* Ajuy – 249 cases
* Cabatuan – 204 cases with one death
* Janiuay – 187 cases
* Lambunao – 178 cases with one death
* Santa Barbara – 177 cases with one death
The other deaths were from Pavia (two from 139 cases), Dueñas (one from 122 cases), Banate (two from 113 cases), New Lucena (one from 110 cases), and Bingawan (two from 110 cases).
After declaring a dengue outbreak last week, Defensor ordered regular massive cleanups to get rid of the breeding places of dengue mosquitoes. (With a report from LHC, Capitol News/PN)