Davao public hospital seek more nurses amidst COVID-19 surge

Jun. 14, 2021

Two health workers who finished their night shift at a local hospital waited for nearly an hour at for their ride offered by the city government as the city started its enhanced community quarantine to control the spread of Covid-19.(Kath M. Cortez/davaotoday.com)

DAVAO CITY – As COVID-19 cases in Davao City continues to rise, a shortage of nurses and medical staff has prompted the head of the Southern Philippine Medical Center (SPMC) to seek help from the City Government of Davao to address this need.

SPMC Chief Dr. Ricardo Audan revealed this shortage during the Davao City Council session last Tuesday.

“We can expand our rooms and beds, but we have a problem with regards to staffing,” Audan said during the City Council regular session.

The city has seen a surge of COVID-19 in the past weeks, reportedly coming from the new variants, as the Department of Health tallied 2,895 active cases in the city.

The SPMC and private hospitals have reached full capacity in their COVID-19 wards.

Audan said that the hospital also requested the local government of Davao and the Department of Health to redeploy medical personnel from the Davao City Police Office (DCPO) and Bureau of Fire Protection- Davao which recently helped them accommodate COVID-19 related cases.

Councilor Mary Joselle Villafuerte, chair of the coucil’s Committee on Health, filed a resolution under suspended rules requesting the Philippine National Police Davao City and Bureau of Fire Davao to provide nursing and medical staff to augment the staffing needs of SPMC and private hospitals in the city.

Davao City Police spokesperson Capt Rose Aguilar said in a press conference on Wednesday that they have deployed 32 nurses as surveillance swabbers at Crocodile Park and another 25 personnel in the regional health service office.

“We are working on that, kung may request naa man tay list sa mga personnel who are nurses and katong mga medical related courses and syempre iconsiderar pud nato nga naa pud mabilin dire sa ground sa amao sa PNP ilabina sa mga stations, (If there are requests we have a list of personnel who are nurses and those who took medical-related courses, and of course we consider to deploy some in our PNP stations),” she said.

Aguilar said that they have 80 personnel with nursing and medical allied degrees but they also need to deploy some of them in their own stations to respond to their health needs.

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