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As threat of Delta variant hovers, private hospitals worry about lack of nurses

FILE PHOTO: Corazon Abaya receives her first dose of Sinovac Biotech’s CoronaVac vaccine against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) during a house to house vaccination, in Manila, Philippines, May 21, 2021. REUTERS/Lisa Marie David

Private hospitals fear that they lack enough manpower in case the Philippines experiences another surge of new 2019 Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) cases due to the appearance of the Delta variant.

Dr. Jose Rene De Grano, president of the Private Hospital Association of the Philippines (PHAPi), said on Tuesday, July 20, that many of their health workers transferred to public hospitals, or have plans to work abroad.

Sa tingin nila ay mas mataas ang sweldo sa government. Iyon iba naman ay siguro nagpapahinga na rin and then, before sila pumunta or talaga naman nag-aapply sila sa abroad,” De Grano explained during DZRH’s ACS Balita.

In order to address the problem, De Grano urges newly-licensed nurses to apply to private hospitals in the Philippines.

Iyon nga ang sinasabi namin sa Department of Health. Iyon lang ang limitation namin right now. Kasi sa mga kama, may mga kama ang mga hospital pero yung mga nurses medyo baka kulangin tayo kapag talaga nagkaroon ng surge,” he stressed.

The PHAPi head also mentioned that some private hospitals in the provinces complained that Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) have yet to reimburse some their COVID-19 claims in 2020.

De Grano said that a recent survey shows that PhilHealth has only paid around four percent of the billions worth of claims.

Iyon ay kailangan natin i-reconcile yung results na iyon kasi ang sinasabi naman ng PhilHealth ay marami na silang nabayaran,” De Grano said.

The Philippines has already recorded 35 cases of the Delta variant, which include 11 local cases.

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