Laguna mulls placing province under stricter quarantine status

Laguna's provincial health director will discuss with officials from the six cities in the province the possibility of reimplementing a stricter quarantine status as the province averaged 4,000 active coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the past two months.

In an interview with DZMM Teleradyo, Laguna Provincial Health Director Dr. Rene Bagamasbad disclosed that back in March, COVID-19 cases in the province were lower than 500 and in the span of six weeks, it reached 4,000 active COVID-19 cases.

Currently, the province's active cases are still averaging 4,000 even after seven weeks.

"Susuriin muna namin, maguusap-usap muna yung mga pinaka-affected na mga cities kasi kahit ho affected ho sila ay hindi rin naman nila gustong magrecommend ng strict na quarantine status (We will analyze and talk first with the most affected cities because even though they are affected, it does not mean that they will likely recommend a strict quarantine status)," he said.

In the past weeks, resort operators in Calamba, Laguna have already appealed for help after they were not allowed to open amid the dry season which is considered to be their peak months due to the imposition of strict quarantine protocols.

Bagamasbad also said that 80 percent or the majority of the COVID-19 cases are from the areas of Biñan, Cabuyao, Calamba, San Pablo, San Pedro, and Sta. Rosa where big companies are located.

He also said that they want to put the province under a stricter quarantine status and impose a stricter implementation of minimum health standards, which, according to him, are not being followed, especially in public transportation.

"Kailangan magusap usap muna dito sa probinsiya bago magbigay ng proposal sa Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) (We need to talk first here in the province before giving a proposal to the IATF)," he stated.

Despite recently being placed under the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), Bagamasbad said that the people's movement continues since the province is in an industrial zone where many of the residents work. There are also those who work in the National Capital Region (NCR), Cavite, Batangas, and Rizal

"Uuwi na may sakit na o infected na. Makakainfect naman, clustering naman sa mga household (They will go home already infected. This infection then spreads inside the household)," he added.

Bagamasbad said they will try to identify the areas where transmission is high like malls, work sites, and public transportation.