The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has partnered with 2Go Shipping to turn passenger vessels into ‘quarantine ships’. This is being done in order to curb the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The quarantine ships will be exclusively used by returning seafarers and other Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) who are required to undergo a 14-day quarantine.
DOTr Press Release5 April 2020DOTr PARTNERS WITH 2GO SHIPPING FOR THE OPERATION OF ‘QUARANTINE SHIPS’MANILA,…
2GO Shipping will be converting 2 of their ships into ‘quarantine ships’ that can serve 1,500 patients. It will be operational by next week.
The operation of ‘quarantine ships’ was given the green light by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) last March 30. The temporary facilities are to be used for persons under monitoring (PUMs), those with travel history in COVID-19 affected areas, and those who show symptoms but have no history of exposure.
Implementation will be done in close coordination with the Department of Health (DOH) and the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ). The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) will be ensuring the unhampered and orderly operations of quarantine ships as well as the delivery of effective onboard health care while the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) will perform support functions to ensure smooth administrative and logistics operations.
Standard environment controls, hygiene protocols, and maritime safety and security regulations should all be followed.
The DOTr assures that “the capacity of each ship will be limited in order to observe proper physical distancing. The ships will also be subjected to inspection by the DOH to ensure their compliance with other health requirements.”
This initiative is being done with the goal of unburdening hospitals that are currently operating at their full capacity. The DOTr has already reached out to various shipping companies to seek support in this project, with many of them signifying interest.
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