The Philippine General Hospital has launched a "Tele-Kumusta" program (previously called "E-dalaw") in their wards to boost the morale of COVID-19 patients who have limited interaction with their families. Through it, patients are able to video call their loved ones for free while admitted in the hospital.
The program is a conscious effort of PGH to aid the patients' mental health, after observing the toll that isolation has taken on them. Nurse Kirstine Ty tells ABS-CBN News that some patients have verbalized their desire to go home, stop their treatment, or even escape just to be reunited with their family.
Health workers would wheel in a plastic-covered laptop into the patient's room to commence the "e-dalaw." The nurse shares in the same interview that the overall response to the program has been positive so far.
According to the UP College of Medicine, the telepresence computers developed for this system can also be used by doctors and nurses. This will allow the medical professionals to monitor COVID-positive patients' condition and communicate with them while lessening exposure.
The Tele-Kumusta program was officially launched in UP-PGH COVID-19 wards on April 14.
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