Bukidnon PLGU and DPWH build MOVE UP-inspired Isolation and Quarantine Facilities
Recent record-high reports on new active COVID-19 cases show that the pandemic is far from over. Even the slight decrease in transmission in Metro Manila offers little comfort, as other regions brace and prepare for a possible surge.
In Mindanao, for example, local governments have expressed fatigue and dwindling resources to respond effectively to the pandemic, on top of other emergencies such as natural hazards, protracted conflict, and climate risks.
As hospital beds run out, people are lining up in makeshift tents with some of them dying while waiting for their turn to be admitted. Overwhelmed health workers, insufficient space for treatment and isolation, and financial difficulty call for alternative and cost-efficient solutions.
From Alternative Temporary Shelters to Community Quarantine Facilities
At the onset of the pandemic, local government partners of the Moving Urban Poor Communities in the Philippines toward Resilience (MOVE UP) Project were aware that the rising cases and lack of medical resources and spatial capacity could pose grave consequences in densely populated cities.
In an effort to complement government response, the MOVE UP project along with partners such as the Czech Republic Humanitarian Aid and United Architects of the Philippines – Emergency Architects worked together to adapt Alternative Temporary Shelters (ATS) into quarantine facilities.
Despite mobility constraints and other health measures, the first Community Quarantine Facility adapted from ATS models was turned over in Malabon City on 18 June 2020, and received DOH certification in the same week. The experience in opening the 38-bed-capacity of the amphitheater still in operation has provided valuable lessons in replication of the strategy in other areas in Malabon and also in Mindanao.
Following the same strategy, community quarantine facilities were also set up by the local governments of Bukidnon, Misamis Oriental, Cagayan de Oro, Tandag City, and Surigao del Sur with support from MOVE UP and REACH projects.
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The Moving Urban Poor Communities Toward Resilience (MOVE UP) Project is funded by EU Civil Protection & Humanitarian Aid – ECHO and is implemented by ACCORD Incorporated, Action Against Hunger Philippines, CARE Philippines, and Plan International Philippines.