PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Monday, April 13, said the government has released a total of P101.5 billion in social amelioration funds for the implementation of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act.
This was contained in the President’s third weekly report to Congress on the implementation of the new law, also known as Republic Act 11469, to address the socioeconomic impact of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.
As of April 13, the Department of Health has recorded 4,392 Covid-19 cases with 315 deaths and 242 recoveries.
The President’s report said the national government is continuously augmenting its fiscal resources for the Covid-19 response measures.
The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) has donated P290 million to Covid-19 refferal hospitals and approved the release of P447 million worth of cash aid to 81 government hospitals.
As of April 8, Duterte said the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) has released P101.5 billion for the implementation of SAP of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Department of the Labor and Employment (DOLE).
The DSWD had listed 17,956,093 informal and poor/near poor families.
The agency said it will issue omnibus guidelines consolidating all issuances pertaining to its implementation of the emergency subsidy program.
The DOLE, for its part, reported that the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged Workers (Tupad) program has provided assistance amounting to P206 million to 118,086 workers from the informal sector as of April 9, 2020.
Under the Covid-19 Adjustment Measures Program (Camp), a total of P840 million has been distributed to 167, 941 workers.
Meanwhile, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) repatriated 2,869 sea-based Filipino workers and 1,666 land-based workers from April 3 to April 8.
The agency continues to monitor the status of 594 Filipino nationals overseas who have been diagnosed with Covid-19.
The Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) said there has been no reported Covid-19 cases in facilities under its supervision.
Visitation privileges have been restricted. Only doctors and lawyers visiting their clients are allowed into prison facilities.
The Commission on Higher Education (Ched) has repatriated 13 overseas students.
The commission is also working with the coordinating council of private educational associations in developing an economic stimulus package for private higher education institutions, taking into consideration the financial impact of ECQ.
“It has consulted state universities and colleges on the anticipated impact of an extended ECQ, including extended class suspension and summer classes,” the report said.
Public health resources
The DOH, for its part, said it will continue to provide timely updates and information on the Covid-19 pandemic through social media engagements, and daily virtual pressers.
The agency recently rolled out its “DataCollect” app to gather daily data from hospitals and stakeholders such as essential resources and supplies, availability of hospital beds, isolation rooms, mechanical ventilators, and human resource needs.
The application may also calculate projected need of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
To augment the healthcare workforce, the DOH has been allowed to engage 857 additional contract of service (COS) workers who will be deployed to various referral hospitals.
The referral hospitals include the University of the Philippines - Philippine General Hospital, Lung Center of the Philippines, and the Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Medical Center.
There are now a total of 3,194 beds dedicated to Covid-19 patients in hospitals nationwide.
Of the total, 2,031 beds are available in NCR, 544 beds in Luzon, 370 beds in Visayas, and 249 beds in Mindanao.
A total of 1,760 Covid-19 isolation rooms are currently occupied.
There are 1,051 available ventilators, 209 of which are currently being used.
There are likewise 855 decontamination facilities established in quarantine control points in the NCR.
As of April 9, the Bureau of Quarantine has assigned 20 teams to oversee the mandatory 14-day quarantine of OFWs in different hotel-quarantine facilities.
Meanwhile, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) continues to facilitate the conversion of evacuation centers as quarantine facilities nationwide.
On testing kits and testing centers, the DOH has significantly increased its capacity.
“As of April 6, a total of 24,755 individuals have been tested, of which 3,991 tested positive and 19,162 yielded negative results,” the report said.
The DOH has activated a total of 11 laboratories and hospitals for Covid-19 testing, from the previous eight facilities.
The agency is still expecting the accreditation of 63 more health facilities to serve as testing areas. (SunStar Philippines)