The Department of Health (DOH) said that every voter should be able to quickly cast their ballots during the national and local elections next year—- given the ongoing threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said that this is necessary given the transmissibility of the virus that causes COVID-19.
“Kapag tiningnan po natin and based on the characteristics ng virus, ang sinasabi nga iyong virus ay iyong magkakaroon ka ng close contact na definition kapag ikaw ay na-expose sa isang tao ng 15 minutes or less. Noong dumating po iyong Delta variant, nawala na po iyong 15 minutos na iyan, dahil napaka-transmissible, highly transmissible ang Delta variant. (When we look at it and based on the characteristics of the virus, the definition of close contact is when you are exposed to someone [carrying the virus] for 15 minutes or less. However, this is not the same with the Delta variant because this is highly transmissible),” said Vergeire.
“Kaya ang atin pong rekomendasyon, kapag ganito, soonest time possible, pinakamabilis na proseso dapat, hindi dapat nagku-congregate, dapat mabilis po ang proseso, maayos, so that hindi po magka-crowd ang mga tao, kapag nangyari ito (So our recommendation, [the casting of ballots for every voter] must be done the soonest time possible. The process should be fast and orderly in order for people not to congregate),” she added.
Vergeire also urged the different political aspirants to strictly observe the different minimum public health standards when doing their campaign activities.
“Alam po natin at naiintindihan natin na nagkakampanya na tayo, so sana tayo na po ang magkaroon ng responsibilidad na magkaroon ng mga ganitong safety protocols during our campaign period (We know and understand that some individuals were already campaigning at this point. We are hoping that we will have that responsibility to observe safety protocols during our campaign period),” she said.