Hospital facilities ready for possible monkeypox entry in PH

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 28)— Private hospitals are ready should the rare monkeypox disease enter the Philippines, a hospital group said.

Palagay ko, okay naman po (I think we’re okay),” Dr. Rene Jose de Grano, president of the Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines (PHAPI), told a public briefing on Saturday when asked about the preparedness of member hospitals.

De Grano said the facilities would first prepare the isolation wards, which was something they have done in the past.

Pero these are viral diseases, na very supportive lang po naman ang ating gagawin sa kasalukuyan, kasi wala pa naman pong mga bakuna for these things,” De Grano explained. “So i-isolate, and then supportive po ang treatment natin.”

[Translation: But these are viral diseases and we can only provide supportive treatment for now since there are no vaccines yet for these things. So we will isolate, and provide supportive treatment.]

Monkeypox, a viral disease coming from animals, can be transmitted to humans through close contact with an infected, according to health authorities. Its symptoms include fever, headache, muscle weakness, and rashes.

READ MORE: What is monkeypox and its signs and symptoms?

There are no detected cases yet of monkeypox in the Philippines, but the Department of Health (DOH) had said it would be intensifying border screening following the reported infections in other countries.

Meanwhile, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) said it is closely coordinating with the DOH and the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) regarding the possible measures against monkeypox.

It added that it would be ready to implement stricter rules if necessary.

“[W]e are ready at any time to implement such travel restrictions kung sakali na makita ng IATF na it's really time at kinakailangan na itong i-implement (if the IATF sees it’s really time to implement this),” BI spokesperson Dana Sandoval said in the same briefing.