A few days after Nanay was admitted to the hospital due to COVID-19, my sister who also caught the virus finally agreed to spend her quarantine period at La Quinta Court (Dasmariñas, Cavite Quarantine Facility No. 5). This is to spare our 77-year-old Tatay from getting the dreaded virus, too. My sister was accompanied to La Quinta by their barangay health worker. As mentioned in my previous blog post, the barangay health center can assist COVID-positive patients in many ways, so it’s important to coordinate things with them.
How does a quarantine facility look like? Do patients pay for their stay in a quarantine facility? How do patients spend their days in a quarantine facility? These are some of the questions I have asked my sister after her quarantine period was over. With her permission, I’m going to relay the answers to these questions and more in this blog post in the hope that many will learn from our family’s experience with COVID-19. To respect and protect my sister’s privacy, I will not include a photo of her in this blog post nor will I mention her name.
Dasmariñas, Cavite Quarantine Facility No. 5
La Quinta Court, a government quarantine facility located on Governors Drive, Langkaan 1, Dasmariñas, Cavite has a 60-bed capacity and manned by one head nurse with the following staff: a nurse assistant, utility worker, and a watchman. A quarantine facility is where COVID-19 asymptomatic patients complete their 14-day quarantine period.
Do patients pay for their stay in a quarantine facility?
My sister’s stay at La Quinta was free. Each patient is quarantined in his/her own room with aircon, cable TV and bathroom. Patients’ meals and bottled water (maximum of two bottles per meal) were also free. Upon arrival at La Quinta, my sister was also given 20 pieces of Vitamin C with Zinc. Local government units (LGUs) are the ones responsible for the upkeep of government quarantine facilities. All rooms are disinfected before patients move in.
These are some of the pictures of the food that were given to La Quinta patients during my sister’s stay there. She said food was good. As you can see, the food they served the patients were healthy balanced meals with meat/fish, veggies and/or soup, and rice.
What should patients bring with them to a quarantine facility?
Patients should bring their own personal hygiene kit (soap, shampoo/conditioner, toothbrush/toothpaste, hand sanitizer/alcohol) towel, clothes, maintenance medicines, face mask, face shield, bedsheet, blanket, pillow, pail, detergent powder for washing their own clothes, bleach for cleaning their bathroom).
What do patients do at La Quinta?
Patients just basically stay in their own rooms for 14 days. It’s where they eat, exercise, sleep, watch TV, wash their laundry, and communicate with their families and friends. Once in a while, a staff member garbed in PPE suit visited the patients to monitor their blood pressure and to check if patients develop new symptoms during their stay. Since all of the patients here asymptomatic, the staff pay more attention to those with comorbidities. According to Very Well Mind, comorbidity means “the existence of multiple disorders in the same person.”
What is my sister’s typical day like at La Quinta?
My sister said she started her day at La Quinta with a prayer. She washed her clothes thereafter and breakfast would have been served by the time she finished. She then took her nap to make up for not being able to sleep well at night. She exercised in the afternoon before taking a shower. She watched TV in between.
Do patients receive medical certificates after their 14-day quarantine?
Yes, they do. A medical certificate is issued to all patients on their last day in the quarantine facility stating that they are COVID-19-recovered and are allowed to go home.
Are discharged patients required to have a repeat swab test?
According to La Quinta’s head nurse, DOH protocol does not require re-swabbing of patients for as long as they have spent 14 symptom-free days at the quarantine facility. My sister’s first symptom occurred on August 22, and she doesn’t have any symptoms of the virus on August 27, the day she and my father had their swab test done. She went to La Quinta on September 3, already asymptomatic, and went home on September 17. She was fetched by the same barangay health worker that took her to La Quinta.