December 2, 2022

The city council has approved a resolution calling on the Department of Trade and Industry-Cordillera and Food and Drug Administration-CAR to regulate the cost of oxygen refill in the city.

Councilor Mylen Victoria Yaranon, author of the resolution, said there is a need to regulate the price of oxygen refill for medical needs to make sure those who need it are able to afford it.

Yaranon said the availability of medical oxygen plays a critical role in determining the survival and recovery of individuals who are severely ill due to the Covid-19. 

Due to the increase of severe Covid-19 cases in the city, people have been buying medical oxygen from medical suppliers causing a rise in the demand for the commodity.

The councilor said during these difficult times, commodities should not be sold at unreasonably high prices, adding business owners should balance making a profit and helping those who are in need.

Yaranon said the price of refilling a 40-liter/60-pound medical oxygen tank in the city ranges from P500 to P650.

The Baguio City Emergency Medical Service, in a post in its Facebook page on Sept. 30, listed 18 establishments in the city and nearby localities selling, renting out, and refilling oxygen tanks.

The City Public Information Office reported on Oct. 16 the city government partnered with a private company for the putting up of an oxygen generation plant to help stabilize the supply of oxygen in the city. 

Mayor Benjamin Magalong said the project would be at no cost to the city government and the plant could be established within two to three weeks depending on the prevailing situation.

Right now, the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center has its own oxygen plant which is currently being upgraded to increase its production level to address the surge in the demand for oxygen. – Jordan G. Habbiling