Discipline needed to avert 2nd wave of COVID-19 cases — DILG

Published May 4, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Chito Chavez

Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Monday stressed that the country’s economic recovery from the health crisis and the end of the novel coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) in the country is dependent primarily on the discipline and flexibility of each individual in dealing with the “new normal’’.

DILG Secretary Eduardo Año  (PCOO/ MANILA BULLETIN)
DILG Secretary Eduardo Año (PCOO/ MANILA BULLETIN)

In a news briefing, Año said the government had set-up guidelines against COVID-19 but the bottom line remains the public’s adherence to the regulations.

Expounding further, Año noted that the people’s social behavior and readiness to take the necessary precautions even without the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) or the GCQ are key factors to avoid the second wave of COVID-10 outbreak.

Recognizing the extreme difficulty, Año said the public should be receptive to change citing the urgency of the people to perform their personal roles in physical distancing, wearing face masks, staying home as much as possible and being always hygienic even when the situation improves.

Even in the areas degraded to GCQ status, Año said it is still prohibited to relax and go to the malls since there is still community quarantine.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, Año said the government responded by enforcing the Luzon-wide ECQ.

On a positive note, Año said that the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) led by the Department of Health (DOH) placed some low-risk areas in Luzon to GCQ to balance “economy versus health or wealth versus health.

Año cited the LGU Epidemiological Framework Response (LGU-EFR) as the basis for the decision whether to downgrade a particular area to CGQ or not.

In this system, it is in the LGU-EFR which states if there is an acceleration, decrease or maintained tally of COVID-19 cases in the community.

Año also noted that the IATF also takes into consideration the capacity of the LGU to respond to healthcare options and possible increase in COVID-19 rates.

Citing as an example, Año said a particular area with a low number of COVID-19 cases may not automatically be downgraded to GCQ if all of its patients are in the intensive care unit (ICU) patients and the ventilators in full capacity.

Año said that these instances pose great risk when there is a second wave of COVID-19 cases.