BACOLOD CITY - Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson has ordered the establishment of another provincial government-run hospital as a coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) center amid the continuing increase in local infections.
As of Thursday, the Valeriano M. Gatuslao Memorial District Hospital in Himamaylan City in the southern part of the province has become the third public health facility dedicated to Covid-19 patients.
"All Covid-19 positive Negrenses that are considered moderate cases shall be referred to the said hospital where they shall receive proper treatment until they are fit to be discharged," Lacson said in a memorandum order released on Wednesday afternoon.
The governor noted there is a need to establish another hospital that shall act as Covid-19 center according to Presidential Proclamation 1218 otherwise known as "Further Extending the Period of Statement of Calamity throughout the Philippines due to Covid-19 declared under Proclamation 1021, series of 2020."
Lacson said the Valeriano M. Gatuslao Memorial Hospital has some 50 beds available.
The two other Covid-19 facilities are the Cadiz District Hospital in the north and the Valladolid District Hospital, also in the south.
The Cadiz District Hospital is also being expanded to provide 70 more beds, Lacson said.
As of September 22, Negros Occidental has logged 26,750 Covid-19 cases, including 3,130 active cases; 22,857 recoveries; and 763 deaths, data of the Provincial Incident Management Team showed.
After the province breached the 2,000 active cases on September 14, Lacson said he believes the local cases could "even go higher".
"Obviously, although not confirmed, it is really the Delta variant that is present in the province. We're always told that the Delta variant is more transmissible and that is exactly what is happening," he added.
He reiterated his advice to Negrenses to protect one's self by strictly adhering to minimum health protocols, adding that what is happening is "not a joke anymore". (PNA)