BOOSTING COVID-19 RESPONSE. Maguindanao health chief, Dr. Elizabeth Samama (right), and BARMM public works minister, Architect Eduard Guerra (extreme left), inspect the newest isolation facility located in the Datu Odin Sinsuat District Hospital in Maguindanao on Friday (July 22, 2022). The 100-bed facility (inset) is also expected to serve patients from Datu Odin Sinsuat town’s neighboring areas. (Photos courtesy of MOH-BARMM)

COTABATO CITY – The Ministry of Public Works in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) turned over Friday a PHP27-million coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) isolation facility in Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao.

The beneficiary, the Datu Odin Sinsuat District Hospital (DOSDH), received the 100-bed capacity facility coinciding with the hospital's 30th anniversary.

It is the 13th facility of its kind in the province.

Dr. Elizabeth Samama, Maguindanao health chief, said the facility was funded under the Bangsamoro Appropriations Act (BAA) 2021 and the Office of the Chief Minister’s (OCM) contingency fund.

During the turnover program, the DOSHD also conducted various medical outreach programs in celebration of its founding day, such as circumcisions, minor surgeries, blood-letting and free check-ups, consultation, and distribution of various medicines.

“The hospital will not only serve the people of Datu Odin but also patients from nearby municipalities,” Samama said, noting that the facility has modern medical equipment and amenities.

Architect Eduard Guerra, minister of the Ministry of Public Works (MPW), said the facility is equipped with air conditioning units, television, security cameras, a security fence, a water system, and other amenities.

“We expect that this facility will be properly maintained so that we may extend our quality and dignified medical services to our constituents,” Guerra said.

In a video message, BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim thanked the MPW and Ministry of Health (MOH) for their continued support for the needs of Bangsamoro patients over the past two years of the pandemic.

“This structure is a testimony of our vow to provide our fellow Bangsamoro the care that they need due to the pandemic,” Ebrahim said.

The MOH will provide qualified personnel to man the facility and has allotted a PHP1 million monthly budget for its operation. (PNA)