By Joseph B.A. Marzan
Several medical personnel of Iloilo Doctors Hospital (IDH) is undergoing the mandatory 14-day quarantine period after being exposed to a confirmed case of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in Iloilo City.
Three resident physicians and six nurses were immediately ordered to undergo quarantine after they were exposed to a 72-year-old male patient who had died of COVID-19 on March 21, 2020.
The patient’s case was confirmed posthumously on March 28.
Dr. Ludivico Jurao, IDH Assistant Administrator for Patient Care and Infection Control Committee chairman, said hospital protocols require personnel who were exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 case to undergo quarantine to avoid infecting other personnel.
Jurado said the IDH has already taken swab samples of their personnel and placed them in a special room where they will be taken care of and monitored during the quarantine period.
“So far, after seven days of quarantine, waay pa man sang nag-manifest nga anything nga problematic sa ila, so we’re very happy nga hopefully waay lang man no. Kay we also made presentation sa [Regional Epidemiology Surveillance Unit] kun pwede namon sila makuhaan sang swab ang mga tawo nga nag-attend sa patient nga ni,” Jurao said.
The patient handled by IDH physicians and nurses was the 11th confirmed case of COVID-19 in Western Visayas.
The patient was admitted to IDH on March 20, when he suffered from pneumonia after a trip to Manila.
Prior to being confirmed for COVID-19, the patient was a Person Under Investigation (PUI) who was reported to have died from Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS).
PUIs are persons with signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and travelled to infected areas either here or abroad.
Jurao said that that the hospital has observed all infection control measures while the patient was in their care.
“We have a dedicated area where we should admit PUIs. When [the patient] arrived at the triage area, he was already showing signs, but when he was going up to the room, his oxygenation started to come down. The resident physician tried everything to keep him alive, but eventually, he succumbed the following day,” Jurao said.
Jurao said that some non-COVID-19 patients of the IDH requested to be moved to other hospitals after the admission and death of the patient in the hospital was made public.
He added that some of their staff has also been discriminated against.
He assured the public that IDH is conducting terminal disinfection and is observing measures to make sure that there would be no more infections within the hospital.