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LOCAL PRODUCTION | Philippines to produce protective gear for health workers
April 6, 2020 , 08:57 PM

(April 6, 2020) – The Philippines is set to produce its protective equipment for health workers battling the coronavirus crisis, a senior health official said Monday.

Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the government tapped the country’s local garment and textile industry to start production of personal protective equipment (PPE) after Holy Week.

“Ramdan ng kagawaran ang pangamba ng ating health workers dahil sa kakulangan ng PPEs,” she said at a daily press briefing. “‘Di lang tayo ang nakararanas nito kung hindi pati na ang ibang bansa.”

The World Health Organization admitted that there is now a “chronic global shortage” of protective gear as more than 200 countries grapple to contain the spread of the virus.

“Ang PPE ay hindi lang basta-basta puwedeng gawin ng kahit sino,” she said. “Ito ay gawa sa medical grade na material at may sinusunod na standards.”

Vergeire said they have teamed up with the trade department, the Philippine General Hospital, and the Confederation of Wearable Exporters of the Philippines (CONWEP), which will supply the import of material from abroad.

Vergeire said the material is expected to arrive by Thursday, April 9.

The health department had announced that it bought over a million sets of protective gear from abroad amounting to P1.8 billion.

Coronavirus infections in the Philippines stood at 3,660, with authorities reporting 414 new cases. The death toll is now at 163, with 73 recoveries. (Christian de Lano Deiparine/JBS)

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