Wearing of face shields in public transportation urged

Published July 31, 2020, 4:24 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

The public is encouraged to wear face shields whenever they are in low ventilation settings such public transportation, Malacañang said Friday.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Diseases (IATF-EID) has started initial discussions on the use of face shields to complement wearing of face masks in public, particularly in low ventilation settings.

“Wearing of masks, washing of hands, and the practice of social distancing are part of the minimum public health standards,” Roque said.

“Studies have shown that wearing of face shields, in addition to wearing of masks and physical distancing, would further reduce virus transmission in low ventilation settings,” he said.

The latest recommendation was made by the government after President Duterte announced the country’s quarantine status for the next 15 days amid the increase in coronavirus cases.

Duterte has extended the general community quarantine (GCQ)  in Metro Manila amid the surging cases of coronavirus infections for Aug. 1 to 15. From the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), Cebu City will further downgrade to the more relaxed GCQ in the same period.

Other GCQ areas are Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal for Luzon; Lapu-Lapu City, Mandaue City, Talisay City, Minglanilla, and Consolacion, Cebu for the Visayas; and Zamboanga City for Mindanao.

The rest of the country are under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) until mid-August.

In the meeting with the President, Roque mentioned the use of face shields in Metro Manila and Calabarzon (Region 4-A) where the transmission remained high.

“Magkakaroon po tayo ng stringent enforcement of minimum health standards. Ito po ‘yung hugas-kamay, suot ng masks, at social distancing, at pagsuot na rin po ng face mask. Apat na po ngayon ang ating minimum health standards — ng face shield (There will be stringent enforcement of minimum health standards. These include washing of hands, wearing of masks, social distancing and wearing of face shields. There are four minimum health standards),” he said.