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‘Di pwedeng solo flight! Vico Sotto: Fighting COVID-19 requires team effort

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MANILA – Pasig City Mayor Vico Sotto said Thursday winning the fight against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) requires team effort among the national government, local government units (LGUs) and the private sector.

“Wala pong playbook. Hindi po naranasan ito ng mayors before us (There is no playbook. The mayors before us didn’t experience it)…(so) we are figuring things out as we go. But thankfully we have the national government, the private sector that is also helping the LGUs. Team effort po talaga ang kailangang gawin (team effort is what we need to do),” Sotto said in a virtual briefing in Malacañang.

Sotto, however, noted that there is a framework in place to help the government contain the spread of Covid-19.

“We may not have a very accurate playbook because it did not happen before, but… more or less we already have a framework and we already know what to do which include test, trace and isolate,” Sotto said, citing some health and socio-economic efforts of the Pasig City government in containing the spread of the virus.

In the city, Sotto said they have been implementing “triaging effort” wherein persons who called the city’s Covid-19 hotline or infected persons who go to the health centers and hospitals, are immediately brought to the government quarantine facilities, to ensure that they will not infect others in their community.

Sotto said the local government is strengthening its triaging efforts for its residents.

Pasig’s quarantine houses in Dahlia Hotel are dedicated to probable and suspected Covid-19 cases, Sotto said, while the city’s centralized quarantine facility in Rizal High School is dedicated to those with mild symptoms and asymptomatic patients.

Those severe and critical patients are confined to Pasig’s referral center for Covid-19, he said.

Sotto said the establishment of the Pasig’s referral facility allows the local government to increase the city’s healthcare capacity to take in Covid-19 patients.

“So far we have 135 beds including the converted hallways that…we have beds there now wherein 86 are occupied and 49 beds remain vacant,” he said. “This is one of the best decisions we made in Pasig, it allows us to treat more Covid-19 patients, it allowed us to reduce the risks of contamination to non-Covid patients, and importantly, it allowed us to maintain the services of our general hospital. Overall it allows us to use our resources more efficiently.”