MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) announced Wednesday the arrival of 15,000 personal protection equipment (PPE) from the first tranche of the one million PPE sets procured by the government in light of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis.
In a virtual press briefing, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the PPEs will undergo inspection and quality assurance before being distributed through the Office of Civil Defense.
The PPEs will be distributed to the East Avenue Medical Center (EAMC), San Lazaro Hospital, Lung Center of the Philippines (LCP), Philippine General Hospital (PGH), Dr. Jose Rodriguez Memorial Hospital, and the Armed Forces of the Philippines Medical Center (AFPMC).
The remaining 985,000 PPE sets are scheduled to arrive between April 6 to 24, Vergeire said.
The purchase of the one million PPEs worth P1.8 billion is facilitated by the Procurement Service of the Department of Budget and Management (DBM).
The health official noted that each PPE set is complete with coveralls, N95 masks, gloves, head cover, shoe cover, goggles, surgical mask, and surgical gown.
PPE sets and other medical supplies were also distributed to 22 health care facilities in Regions II, IV-A, VII, X, XI, XII and CARAGA on Tuesday, Vergeire said.
Earlier, the DOH reported 227 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total infection in the country to 2,311.
Meanwhile, there are now 96 COVID-19 related deaths in the country while 50 patients had recovered from the disease.
The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses named the novel coronavirus as SARS-CoV-2 or severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2.
It causes mild symptoms such as fever and cough for most people but can cause serious illness such as pneumonia for others, especially older adults and people with existing health problems.
To prevent infection, authorities are urging people to practice regular hand washing, cover the mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, and avoid close contact with those who show respiratory symptoms.
Worldwide, the virus, which was first detected in Hubei, China late last year, has so far infected over 860,000 people in 180 countries and territories. Of the number, more than 42,000 died while over 178,000 recovered.