Three of the Philippines’ preeminent buildings are set to be converted into quarantine areas amid the rise of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the country.
With the capacities of government and private hospitals already rapidly being stretched out to accommodate the rising number of COVID-19 patients (now at 2,044 cases) a handful of additional quarantine facilities are now set to be constructed.
On Tuesday, Mar. 31, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, in a press briefing, said the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), World Trade Center (WTC) in Pasay and the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Manila will be used as facilities for the treatment and health monitoring of COVID-19 patients.
The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), in cooperation with private entities, will be in charge of converting the said buildings into quarantine facilities.
The DPWH is said to redesign and convert PICC Forum Halls 1 to 3 into COVID-19 facility within two weeks with the planned facility estimated to cater to the treatment of about 630 patients.
On the other hand, the Ayala Development Corporation along with the Makati Development Corporation will undertake the development of the World Trade Center, while the Razon Group will convert the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex (specifically the Ninoy Aquino Basketball Stadium) into a facility for COVID-19 infection control.
With this, the DPWH assures that it will accredit and provide quarantine passes to construction workers who will work on the facilities so they could be exempted from the government’s strict home quarantine policy.
For the past weeks, the Department, along with the Bases Conversion Development Authority, has been consulting with renowned architect and specialist in hospital design Dan Lichauco of Archion Architects about the critical features to be built into quarantine facilities.
The government is also reportedly studying the conversion of sports stadiums such as the PhilSports Arena in Pasig, Rizal Memorial Stadium and Philippine Arena located in Bulacan as additional quarantine facilities.
Header photo courtesy of Inquirer.net
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Writer: JOY THERESE GOMEZ