All Metro Manila hotels now fully booked, can’t be converted into Covid-19 isolation facilities

A health worker walks behind a sign outside San Juan de Dios Hospital indicating that its Covid-19 facility is at full capacity, in Pasay, Philippines. - Reuters

MANILA, April 10 (Philippines Daily Inquirer/ANN): All 300 hotels in Metro Manila affiliated with the Philippine Hotel Owners Association (PHOA) are already fully booked and can no longer be converted into isolation facilities.

In a televised briefing Saturday (April 10), PHOA president Arthur Lopez said their hotels have already been turned into temporary lodging for returning overseas Filipino workers (OFWs).

“Right now, all the hotels in the NCR are fully booked, ” Lopez said.

“Why do I say fully booked? Because OWWA (Overseas Workers Welfare Administration) has taken over these hotels for the OFWs that are returning back to the country, ” he added.

The Philippine College of Physicians earlier urged the government to convert hotels into isolation units for Covid-19 patients as new cases continue to overwhelm hospitals.

On Saturday, the government is expected to decide if it will extend or lift the enhanced community quarantine over Metro Manila, Rizal, Bulacan, Laguna and Cavite.

Meanhwhile, an offshore earthquake with a magnitude of 6.1 shook Davao Occidental province in the southern Philippines on Saturday, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said.

The quake, which struck at 5.30pm local time, hit at a depth of 314km, about 148 kilometeres southwest to Sarangani town, said Phivolcs, explaining the quake was tectonic in origin.

The quake will trigger aftershocks but will not cause damage, said Phivolcs.

The tremor was also felt in Alabel town in Sarangani province as well as in the Mindanao region.

The Philippines has frequent seismic activity due to its location along the Pacific "Ring of Fire. - Philippine Daily Inquirer/ANN

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