ARBUENA'S TAKE ON THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
News as recent as September still points to a steadily growing amount of cases to this day. This begs the question of whether our healthcare facilities were prepared to handle a disaster of this scale. The country's difficulties point to two particular variables: the band-aid management of the crisis and the limited healthcare structures' capacities. Principal architect of ARBUENA Architects, Ar. Allen R. Buenaventura, believes that the challenges we're facing now is a call to action for specialists in different sectors to collaborate for the nation's recovery.
The Philippines' need for specialists in different sectors to work together
After finishing with a degree in BS Architecture in 1987 and Masters in Construction Management in 2001, Ar. Allen did not think he would pursue a career in planning and designing medical facilities. He got engrossed in healthcare facilities by being sent around the Philippines and other countries to observe buildings like laboratories and schools. By being employed at the University of the Philippines Manila and being exposed to hospitals during his career, he got the opportunity to teach in the academe about healthcare architecture. Over time, he grew the confidence to practice his craft. This sparked the idea of starting his own architectural firm specializing in educational, commercial, and healthcare sectors.
Established in 1993, he started ARBUENA Architects to serve a wide range of clientele, both in private and public sectors. Since 2002, they have been providing construction services to medical professionals and healthcare providers around the Philippines. This specialization in building healthcare and research facilities, while also being among the few professionals recognized by the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) as a healthcare architectural firm, makes them a necessary service provider for the nation's recovery.
THERE'S NO DENYING THAT THE PHILIPPINES' RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC DIDN'T REFLECT THE COUNTRY'S BEST EFFORTS IN ADDRESSING A CRISIS. BY JULY, MORE THAN 80,000 PEOPLE TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID-19, WITH CASES DOUBLING FROM THE MONTH PRIOR. THE STAGGERING NUMBER OF INFECTED PATIENTS LED TO BOTH PRIVATE AND PUBLIC HOSPITALS IN METRO MANILA REACHING FULL CAPACITY, WITH OVER 76% OF COVID-19 WARDS OCCUPIED. THIS RAISES CONCERN FOR THE DANGER OF HOSPITALS DEVELOPING "WARNING ZONES", EVEN IN THE COMING MONTHS.