ANGELES CITY — The city government here on Wednesday (April 7) has designated additional facilities to accommodate patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Through the help of the Hotel and Restaurant Association in Pampanga (HARP), three accommodation facilities, namely O Garden Hotel, Diamond Spring Hotel (Annex), and Sydney Hotel were identified as isolation hubs for patients who are asymptomatic and with mild symptoms.
The HARP’s move, which is exclusive for Pampanga residents, is in response to the call of Mayor Carmelo Lazatin Jr. for additional facilities as the city’s public and private hospitals are already filling up with Covid-19 patients.
The hotel facilities have a combined number of 106 rooms.
Asymptomatic patients and those with mild symptoms who will be isolated in those hotels will be monitored regularly by healthcare workers of the Rafael Lazatin Memorial Medical Center (RLMMC).
Dr. Froilan Canlas, RLMMC officer-in-charge, said on Wednesday that patients should be assessed first at the RLMMC before they can be confined or isolated in the hotels.
“Hindi po basta-basta pwedeng dumiretso sa mga nabanggit na hotels. Kailangan po munang mai-check ang pasyente ng mga doctors sa RLMMC (You can’t just go straight to the said hotels. Doctors at RLMMC need to check the patient first),” Canlas said in an official social media post.
The existing arrangement at the RLMMC for Covid-19 confirmed patients as required by the Department of Health–Authorized Bed Capacity (ABC) is 60 beds out of the 120 total bed capacity.
On top of this, there are three isolation tents with air-conditioned units installed at RLMMC, accommodating eight patients each.
It can be recalled that since the start of the pandemic, the HARP has allowed some of their establishments to be used as temporary housing for front-liners and health workers.
Lazatin said the association has also actively extended donations of water bottles and food packs.
Through these efforts, the mayor said the city government has remained committed to helping local hotels and restaurants get back on their feet, after being gravely affected by the pandemic.
Part of the city government’s assistance includes extending business tax payment without penalties, strengthening the tourism campaign in the city through promotional shots posted on social media pages, and urging the City Council to pass an ordinance that would grant tax relief in the form of a tax credit worth PHP100,000.