PH Arena ready to receive COVID-19 patients after Iglesia ni Cristo turnover to govt.

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 30) — The Iglesia Ni Cristo has turned over its cavernous Philippine Arena in Bulacan to the government on Thursday after being converted into a quarantine facility for COVID-19 patients, the Bases Conversion and Development Authority has announced.

“We would like to thank our kapatiran sa Iglesia headed by Chief Minister Eduardo Manalo," said National Task Force COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. "Kitang-kita namin na ang spirit of bayanihan is very much alive."

[Translation: We can see that the bayanihan spirit is very much alive.]

The largest indoor arena in the world, the We Heal As One Center-Philippine Arena Ciudad de Victoria can accommodate 300 patients. It will be manned by 50 medical workers from the Department of Health, added the BCDA.

On April 3, BCDA President and CEO Vince Dizon announced the Philippine Arena will be transformed into a "mega quarantine facility" for suspected coronavirus cases from Central Luzon.

The government had been converting facilities into quarantine centers in line with its "locate, isolate and cure" strategy.

Ang ating strategy, kailangan natin i-trace yung posibleng may infection, so we locate them and then we test them. Pero hindi tumitigil doon; kailangan mo sila i-isolate kasi pag hindi mo in-isolate, magse-spread yung infection sa communities. Kailangan din siguraduhin na ma-cure sila. Ang sistema na ito ay hand-in-hand,” said Dizon.

[Translation: In our strategy, there is a need to trace anyone with possible infection, so we locate them and then test tem. But it doesn't stop there; you need to isolate them because if you don't, the infection will spread among communities. [We] must also ensure they get cured. This system goes hand-in-hand.]

All We Heal As One Centers provide round-the-clock healthcare, the agency said. The facilities also have air-conditioned cubicles, free meals for patients and frontliners, and free Internet connection.

The Philippines currently has 8,488 confirmed cases of the coronavirus. 568 have succumbed to the illness, while 1,043 have recovered.