INC turns over Philippine Arena for Covid patients

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga – Patients infected with coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in Central Luzon and adjacent areas may now be accommodated at the Philippine Arena mega-patient care center in Bocaue, Bulacan.

Dubbed as “We Heal as One Center,” the facility was turned over on Thursday by the Iglesia Ni Cristo (INC) to the national government after its completion in just 10 days.

The INC offered to the government the available facilities at its Ciudad de Victoria property as isolation hub free of charge.

“We would like to thank our ‘kapatiran’ sa Iglesia headed by Chief Minister Eduardo Manalo. The government would like to thank you for your generosity. Kitang-kita namin ang spirit of bayanihan (We could very well see that the spirit of civic unity) is very much alive,” National Task Force Covid-19 chief implementer and Presidential Peace Adviser, Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said in a statement.

Three big tents were converted into a health care center fully equipped with hospital beds for patients, including repatriated overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) who will undergo mandatory 14-day facility-based quarantine for Covid-19.

A total of 92 bed cubicles were installed at Tent 1 with a floor area of 26 meters by 105 meters, and 104 bed cubicles each for Tents 2 and 3 with identical sizes of 50 meters by 60 meters, which have been completed conforming with the Department of Health’s (DOH) standard space of 3.05 square meters per patient.

The facility is equipped with air-conditioning units and offers 24/7 health care, free internet connection, and free meals for patients and front-liners.

Separate toilet facilities for health workers using 40-footer container vans, medical personnel’s mess hall, disinfecting tents, and supply storage area have also been set-up in each of the three isolation centers.

The facility is the third patient care center to be built in Central Luzon after the ASEAN Convention Center in Clark, Pampanga and the National Government Administrative Center in New Clark City, Capas, Tarlac.

BCDA president and chief executive officer Vince Dizon earlier said the conversion of some facilities into We Heal As One Centers is the government’s strategy to prevent the spread of Covid-19 which are to “locate, isolate, and cure” the suspected patients.The Philippine Arena quarantine hub was built through the collective efforts of the national government with the INC, Villar Group of Companies, MVP Group of Companies, North Luzon Expressway, PLDT/SMART Communications, Maynilad Water Services, and Manila Electric Company. (PNA)