Dialysis centers for COVID-19 patients sought

April 08, 2020

THE Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has asked the Department of Health (DOH) to designate dialysis centers for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients, persons under investigation (PUIs), and persons under monitoring (PUMs) who are also suffering from kidney ailments.

​This as thousands of dialysis patients have no place to go because they are turned away by some hospitals or dialysis centers for fear of spreading the dreaded disease.

​PRC Chairman Richard Gordon said he has already asked Health Secretary Francisco Duque III to designate dialysis centers in the provinces as COVID-19- dedicated centers.

​“The problem is that others cannot get in hospitals or being declined by dialysis outlet. So we should designate, the DOH can do that. If you cannot agree on this area, then this dialysis center will be the one designated for COVID-19-positive dialysis patients, the PUIs and PUMs, and they can no longer decline because they need dialysis),” he said in a statement.

​If patients who are COVID-19 positive or who are PUIs or PUMs are refused to be provided with dialysis treatments in their towns, he said that they would have to be rushed to the National Kidney and Transplant Institute (NKTI) by ambulance which would necessitate the ambulance driver and the paramedics on board to undergo the mandatory 14-day quarantine.

​The humanitarian organization said one of the tents is being used as triage, where patients are interviewed and tested; while the other is used for dialysis operations.