President Duterte orders investigation of nine hospitals that refused patients amid COVID-19

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President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday night ordered the Department of Health (DOH) to investigate nine hospitals that reportedly refused to accept patients amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

“Nine hospitals ang nag-ano, nag-tanggi, nine hospitals who refused to accept patients and therefore we are calling, not after the COVID crisis, I’ll be asking today the DOH to start the investigation,” Duterte said in a televised briefing.

The President, however, did not specify the hospitals that will be investigated.

“I’m sorry but there are rules to be followed… Hospital kayo; you are the sanctuary of the sick, you do not choose the ailment of the patient you are accepting,” Duterte said.

“It is simply not within your power, morally, kaya mag-hanap kayo ng paraan on how to deal with the problem because you are a hospital,” he added.

The President proposed the building of makeshift tents where COVID patients can be temporarily admitted.

“You are also trying to protect everybody in the hospital, including the sick patients, so I can understand […] but whether or not it is really enough that is the problem,” he said.

“[Y]ou are a hospital. So kung hindi mo kaya maging hospital, sasarahan na lang kita […] why pretend to be a hospital when you cannot be a hospital?” Duterte said.

Last Tuesday, a 65-year-old male who suffered from difficulty in breathing in Nueva Ecija died at home after being refused by six different hospitals./Stacy Ang

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