The Marikina City government is reconfiguring the set up in offices, workplaces, establishments, and other facilities in the city as part of the “new normal” and boost preventive measures to curb transmission of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
Mayor Marcelino Teodoro said the local government is strictly following the health protocols and guidelines of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
“Nireview ho namin yung work-setting namin, ang probleman namin, nakita namin yung opisina namin wala palang negative pressure, walang nilalabasan yung hangin naka air-condition lang yung ano, tapos medyo yung social distancing sa opisina may mali po (We reviewed our work setting. We saw that there’s no negative pressure within our office. The air couldn’t go out and there’s a concern on social distancing in the office),” Teodoro said stressing that transmissions happen inside facilities.
“So we are trying to reconfigure our work setting as well as hindi lang ho yung (not only in the) city government pati po sa (but also in the) private [sectors], yun lang yung challenge po sa private wala na silang panggawa (the challenge is that they are not financially capable) so we are trying to subsidize the reconfiguration,” he added.
Teodoro pointed out there is a need to consider reconfiguring workplaces to comply with physical distancing measures and avoid further local transmission in the workplace.
“Hindi po pwedeng trace lang (nang) trace, treat lang nang treat, pati sa (We can’t just trace and trace, treat and treat. We also have to consider) engineering, even in our infrastructure, we need to reconfigure everything,” Teodoro said.
Government should also practice reconfiguring the environment, apart from imposing minimum health standards, he added.
“Halimabawa lang ho, pinako-compute ko ho yung mga work area namin, ‘yung area ho mismo tapos tinitingnan ho namin ‘yung capacity lang ng taong pupwede roon, halimbawa in a 50 square meters (sqm) office, ilan lang yung capacity ng tao na pupwede dun? (For example, we computed our work areas and figured out how many persons can fit in that space, say, in a 50- sqm. office, how many persons should occupy that space?) So we’re doing that now,” he said.
“Tingin ko ho (I think) that’s a new normal,” he said.
Teodoro said the city government has been considering the setup of the health centers, public terminals, and other facilities to avoid COVID-19 contamination in such areas.
“‘Yung mga tricycle terminals ho namin nira-rationalize po namin (We are also rationalizing our tricycle terminals), because you cannot go back in a usual manner dati hindi na ho iba na talaga eh (it’s different now) we need to recognize the fact that it is really different now,” Teodoro added.