St. Luke’s Medical Center, which owns two major private hospitals in Metro Manila, today declared that its facilities could no longer accept any COVID-19 patients due to the deluge of new cases.
In a statement shared on social media, St. Luke’s said that its Quezon City and Taguig City hospitals have reached “full capacity in all the intensive care units (ICUs) for COVID-19 patients.”
“The critical care beds in the Emergency Room, which we have increased to twice the capacity to cater to more COVID-19 cases, have also reached full capacity. The COVID-19 wards in both hospitals are likewise full. Several patients for admission are now lined up in the Emergency Room,” St. Luke’s said.
St. Luke’s advised all COVID-19 patients, including suspected cases, to seek treatment elsewhere. It said it will inform the public when they could start accepting COVID-19 patients again. This is the second time that St. Luke’s has declared full capacity this month.
The announcement comes less than a week after the leader of Metro Manila’s private hospitals’ association said that most medical facilities in the region have already reached critical care capacity due to the surge in coronavirus patients. He added that what compounded the problem was the refusal of some patients to transfer to government isolation facilities because doing so would mean that they would lose contact with their families.
In Cebu City, the situation has become so dire that some nurses working in private hospitals have threatened to quit over fears that they will get sick of COVID-19. The situation has led the Cebu Medical Society to urge the government to provide proper protective gear to stop the nurses from abandoning their jobs.
Access to protective gear, and the government’s inability to provide hospitals with it, has been an issue since March.
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