Quarantine status reclassification of most PH areas set next week — Palace 

Published June 8, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Genalyn Kabiling

The community quarantine status of a larger part of the country may be reclassified by next week given the downward trend in coronavirus infections, Malacañang said Monday.

Presidential Spokesperson Atty. Harry Roque (TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO/ MANILA BULLETIN)
Presidential Spokesperson Atty. Harry Roque


Metro Manila, however, will have to be “examined closer” if its lockdown status can be downgraded to modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) given its different health data, according to presidential spokesman Harry Roque.

Roque made the statement after presenting a graph showing COVID-19 cases based on the date when a patient started to show symptoms of the disease. In the new reporting scheme, the Palace official highlighted the decline in the cases of infections based on the date of the onset of illness.

“Sa datos na nakita natin, bumababa ang kaso ng COVID-19 kapag ni-record natin sila from the onset of illness. At tingin ko, ang datos sa doubling time ay humahaba din. I would say that it is a safe conclusion na magkakaroon na naman po ng reclassification except iba po ang data talaga ng Metro Manila (Based on the data we have seen, the COVID-19 cases have decreased when we recorded them by the date of onset of illness. I think the data on case doubling time is now longer. I would say that it is a conclusion that we will have a reclassification expect Metro Manila which has a different data),” he said in a televised press briefing.

“I think Metro Manila will have to be examined closer kung mag-MGCQ siya next week. I cannot actually conclude because the data of NCR is different compared to the national trend,” he said.

The Inter-agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) is expected this week to present its recommendation to President Duterte on whether to lift, modify, or extend the community quarantine enforced across the country. The quarantine status of the country may be tackled by President Duterte and the IATF members in a meeting in Davao City, Roque said.

“This is already the second week and we expect on the 15th there will be new classifications on the different parts of the county,” he said.

The government earlier sought to relax the lockdown measures across the country, allowing more businesses to reopen and public transportation to resume at reduced capacity in a bid to jumpstart the local economy.

After more than two months of strict lockdown, Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Cagayan Valley, Calabarzon, Central Visayas, Pangasinan, Zamboanga City, and Davao City have downgraded to the more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) until June 15. The rest of the country has been placed under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ), the lowest quarantine level implemented by the national government.

As of June 7, the country has recorded 12,895 cases of coronavirus, including 1,003 deaths. Most of the cases of infection are from Metro Manila.

Despite the decline in the COVID-19 cases based on his reporting method, Roque appealed anew to the public to continue to observe the health protocols to avoid getting infected.

“Kung ang pagbabasehan po ay iyong onset of illness, kailan nagkaroon ng unang sintomas, eh malinaw na malinaw po ang trend, pababa na po tayo ng trend (If we will base it on the onset of illness or when the first symptoms showed, the downward trend is very clear),” he said.

“Pero kinakailangan mag-ingat pa rin po dahil pupuwedeng sumipa iyan ‘pag nawala ang social distancing, ang pagsusuot ng mask, at ng pananatiling malusog (But we must still take precautions because the data can still spike if there is no social distancing, wearing of mask, and staying healthy),” he said.