“Nangyayari na yung kinatatakutan nating mangyari [what we are fearing to happen is already happening],” Dr. Jaime Almora said in an interview on Unang Balita.
“Hindi tayo natatalo, natalo na [we’re not losing, we already lost],” he said, two days after the Philippines recorded 10,016 new cases in a day — a record-high number.
Almora said the hospital capacity is not as big a problem as its capability to treat patients, noting the facilities are experiencing lack of manpower.
“Ibig sabihin kung wala silang capability, not necessarily wala silang capacity. Kung beds ang pag-uusapan, merong beds. Ang wala ay ang mag-aasikaso sa pasyente,” he said.
(If they don’t have the capability it doesn’t mean they don’t have capacity. We have beds, but what is lacking is those who will take care of the patients.)
The PHA President added that even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the country is already lacking nurses due to non-performing nursing schools and the K-12 program that resulted in no nursing graduates for a year. Many nurses also transferred from private hospitals to the government for a bigger income.
PH already ‘lost’ its battle against COVID-19: PHA president
“Nag-conspire ang lahat ng mga yan para mawalan ng nurses ang ating private hospitals [all those events contributed to the lack of nurses in private hospitals],” Almora said.
He also noted that the health workers are already overworked, citing most of them are working in 16-hour shifts.
“Kumbaga sa giyera, nasa firing line sila at wala nang reinforcement. Nanawagan kami sa ahensiya ng gobyerno na nag-employ ng maraming nurse to provide reinforcement,” he said.
(The nurses are at the firing line in this war and there is no reinforcement. We are appealing to government agencies that employ the nurses to provide reinforcement.)
Almora also asked for mild COVID-19 cases to recover at home. He also appealed to the public to try teleconsulting instead of going out.
“Tumawag na lang sa mga doktor, huwag nang pumunta sa ospitals [just call the doctors and avoid going to the hospitals],” he said.