In his fifth State of the Nation Address, President Rodrigo Duterte bared the government’s plan to hire more than 20,000 health professionals for improved medical assistance especially to residents of isolated and disadvantaged areas.

Duterte added that the government also seeks to implement projects to establish and improve Barangay Health Stations, Rural Health Units, and other healthcare facilities.

Apart from coronavirus-hit health workers in the front line of the country’s battle against the pandemic, among the alarming concerns of the country amid COVID-19 include key hospitals reporting full capacities in their coronavirus wards while infections continue to surge.

The Department of Health also said that hospital capacity in the country is now in “warning zone,” adding that the country’s healthcare system could soon be overwhelmed given the overall utilization of hospital beds for COVID-19 patients.

As of writing, the Philippines now has 86,673 COVID-19 cases with 55,109 active infections, 26,617 recoveries, and 1,947 deaths.

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