The Negros Occidental provincial government is converting a third hospital into a COVID-19 designated facility, and is increasing its oxygen production, as the number of Negrenses hit by the virus continue to rise, Provincial Administrator Rayfrado Diaz said Tuesday, September 14.
They are preparing for a COVID-19 surge with the presence of the Delta variant in the province, he said.
Negros Occidental had 2,043 active COVID-19 cases and nine new deaths on Tuesday, the Provincial Incident Management Team reported.
The province had 1,534 new COVID-19 cases in the first half of September compared to 1,589 for the entire August, Diaz said.
Negros Occidental’s total COVID-19 deaths since the start of the pandemic also hit 675 on Tuesday.
Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson has directed the conversion of the Valeriano M. Gatuslao Memorial District Hospital into a COVID-19 designated facility that will cater solely to patients hit by the virus, Diaz said.
This will open up 100 more beds for COVID-hit patients in southern Negros Occidental on top of the 35 at the Valladolid District Hospital, that is also a coronavirus-designated facility.
The non-COVID patients at the Himamaylan hospital will be sent to the Lorenzo D. Zayco District Hospital in Kabankalan City, Diaz said.
The bed capacity of the Cadiz City District Hospital, which caters to COVID-19 patients in northern Negros, with the opening of its fifth floor is now 106, Diaz said.
The Cadiz District Hospital annex is also being renovated to enable the opening of 100 more COVID-19 beds, he added. The governor wants it ready as soon as possible with the rising number of COVID-19 cases, he said.
The Cadiz District Hospital had 11 available beds and the Valladolid District Hospital had 8 on Tuesday, Diaz said.
The Negros Occidental oxygen plant next to the Teresita L. Jalandoni Provincial Hospital in Silay City is also increasing its production from 50 to a targeted 180 oxygen tanks a day, he said.
The provincial government will also purchase P50 million worth of oxygen to meet the needs of the moderate and severe COVID-19 patients of the province, he said.
He said even the Mambukal Resort healing facility of the provincial government in Murcia is full with 34 COVID-hit provincial government employees, many of whom are health care workers, he said.*