Local government units (LGUs), together with the Philippine National Police (PNP), will go house-to-house to move out mild and asymptomatic COVID-19 patients from their homes and transfer them to a quarantine facility.
“Ayaw na po natin ng home quarantine [para sa] mga positive natin kung wala naman po talagang kapasidad ang kanilang bahay (We are discouraging home quarantine for positive patients, especially if their houses don’t have the capacity for it),” Department of the Interior and Local Government Eduardo Año said in a press briefing in Taguig on Tuesday.
“Kaya ang gagawin natin, sa tulong ng local government units at ng Philippine National Police, ay ibabahay-bahay po talaga natin ‘yan at dadalhin natin ang mga positive sa ating COVID isolation facilities (We’re going house-to-house to look for positive patients with the help of local government units and the Philippine National Police and then we will bring them to COVID isolation facilties),” he added.
Año also sought the cooperation of the public to report to them cases within their neighborhood or among persons they know of.
The DILG secretary said hiding COVID-19 patients is punishable by law, citing Republic Act 11332, the “Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act.”
“Ito ang tamang paraan para matalo natin ang COVID virus dito (This is the right way for us to beat the virus),” Año said.
The house-to-house search is part of the government’s “Oplan Kalinga” which seeks to reduce the risk of more infections in a household and community.
Under the program, COVID-19 patients who don’t have their own rooms and own bathrooms in their homes, will be transferred to isolation centers.