Role switch for RMSC, PhilSports stadia

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    THERE is a new role for the iconic Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Manila and the younger Philsports Complex in Pasig City.

    Both sporting complexes are being turned into temporary medical facilities to help decongest hospitals deluged by the steadily growing number of coronavirus cases in Metro Manila.

    The two sports facilities are being checked by the Department of Public Works and Highways to assess how they could be used in line with the Department of Health’s requirements.

    Being considered as field hospitals are the Multi-purpose Arena and the track oval at the PhilSports Complex, while also expected to be used within the sprawling RMSC, built in 1927, are the Rizal Memorial Coliseum, Ninoy Aquino Stadium and the Rizal Baseball Stadium, which have been used before as evacuation or warehouse and repacking centers for relief goods.

    PSC chairman William Ramirez on Saturday said the sports governing body volunteered the government facilities as venue options, with the coronavirus infections breaching the 1,000-mark. The count has reached 1.418 by yesterday.

    “They are government facilities so we were already anticipating that it might come to that point,” said Ramirez.

    National athletes quartered in said facilities were previously asked to leave before the implementation of the enhanced community quarantine.

    Only around 30 athletes and coaches, medical and assisting administrative staff and security personnel guarding the complexes remaining at the areas.

    National Training Director Marc Velasco said the PSC is making sure the athletes and personnel are secured and isolated from the areas to be used as field hospitals.

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