A lawmaker is proposing to the government the use of school classrooms as quarantine facilities for asymptomatic and mild cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Marikina City Rep. Bayani Fernando said it is safer for the patients with mild cases to stay inside classrooms than in their houses, were the disease may spread to family members.
Fernando made the proposal following reports that many hospitals, both public and private, are nearing their bed capacity limits for COVId-19 patients.
“I am proposing that asymptomatic individuals be quarantined in classrooms and the ratio would be 1:1 or one classroom, one COVID-19 positive,” Fernando said in a statement.
He cited a recent study by South Korean epidemiologists which found out that people were more likely to contract the coronavirus from members of their own households than from contacts outside the home.
Fernando added that people infected with COVID-19 fear going to quarantine facilities because they feel it is more risky to stay in cramped areas in the quarantine facilities built by the government.
He said the standard 63 sqm classrooms may have better ventilation, lighting and other amenities compared to many households.
“We have around 1 million classrooms across the country and these are located in the communities. I believe that most of our classrooms are equipped with electric fans especially in cities where COVID is prevalent,” he added.
For this school year, the Department of Education will implement distance and blended learning. Face-to-face classes will only be implemented by January next year in areas with low-risk cases.