WITH THE rapid increase of dengue cases in the country, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), under the leadership of Chairman Richard Gordon, deployed medical tents to assist hospitals currently experiencing an overflow of patients.
The Red Cross has set up 10 airconditioned medical tents in most affected hospitals—Balasan District Hospital, Sara District Hospital, and Guimbal District Hospital in Iloilo; Tapaz District Hospital and Bailan District Hospital in Capiz; Aklan Provincial Hospital; Pagamutang Bayan ng Dasmarinas in Cavite, and Gregorio Lluch Memorial Hospital in Iligan.
These hospital tents have now served 2,526 patients—mostly children aged eight months old to 12 years old.
Vida Obon, mother of a one-year-old patient at PRC’s medical tent in a hospital in Cavite, feared the possibility of having her son transferred to a hospital in Manila, which is a two-to-three-hour ride from the province.
“Noong nasa emergency room kami, sabi ng doctor, wala nang kama dahil sa sobrang dami ng pasyente,” Obon said. “Natuwa naman ako nung sinabi na merong tent ang Red Cross. Dahil dito, hindi na kami kailangang ma-transfer sa malayong hospital.”
According to Richard Soriano, father of an 11-year-old patient, the congestion in the hospital raised concerns that his son PJ, who was diagnosed with scoliosis, could worsen his condition.
“Palaging sumasakit ang likod niya kaya natakot ako na baka mailagay siya sa siksikan na kama. Buti na lang dito sa tent ng Red Cross, maluwag. Nakakapagpahinga siya ng maayos,” Soriano said.
PRC, in partnership with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and the German Red Cross, continues to support the Department of Health (DOH) to assist hospitals, especially in rural areas.
The deployment of medical tents is part of Gordon’s three-point strategy to address the dengue crisis—decongest hospitals, ensure the adequacy of safe and quality blood supply, and conduct massive information and cleanup drives.
“Hindi na magsisiksikan sa mga ospital ng Dasmariñas, Iloilo, Capiz, Iligan at Aklan ang mga may sakit ng Dengue. Lingid man sa kaalaman ng karamihan, hindi tumitigil ang PRC sa pagtulong sa mga nangangailangan, umulan man o umaraw,” Gordon said.
Latest report from the DOH shows that the number of dengue-related deaths this year spiked up to 882—a 63-percent increase from last year—while 208,917 dengue have been affected by the dengue crisis.