Architects, engineers plan to transform shipping containers into COVID-19 emergency hospitals

April 12, 2020 | By: AC Nicholls, CNN Philippines

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 30) - A group of local architects and engineers is working to build emergency hospitals for coronavirus disease patients out of shipping containers.

The group called Rapid Deployment (RaD) Hospitals is coordinating with the Department of Health to build these makeshift facilities as few private hospitals have announced that they already reached maximum capacity and can no longer accept more COVID-19 patients.

With rising number of cases, experts believe more hospitals will reach full capacity.

“May sources sila ng mga masks, meron din gumagawa ng tents. Pero ano yung hindi naa-address right now? So we decided to focus on isolation and ICU (intensive care units),” project head Mac Evangelista told CNN Philippines.

[Translation: They already have sources of masks and some are building tents. But what is not being addressed right now? So we decided to focus on isolation and ICU.]

RaD Hospitals’ design features a 151-square meter facility that will have twenty-four isolation rooms. It will also have nurse stations.

The group is now in the fund-raising phase. One facility will cost at least P2 million and that’s just for labor.

Aside from money donations, the group is also calling on shipping companies to donate decommissioned container vans.

They also need donations for other construction materials such as steel and fiber cement.

“Itong project hindi lang about helping the health industry. Tinitignan din namin na tumulong sa mga kasamahan natin sa construction—lahat ng projects on hold. Yung mga sume-sweldo ng arawan, ito na yung opportunity na kumita during these times,” Evangelista said.

[Translation: This project is not just about helping the health industry. We are also looking forward to help people in the construction industry, whose projects are on hold. Those who earn their wages daily, this is an opportunity for them during these times.



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