MANILA - Avoiding conversation and consumption of food in shuttles and confined areas is the least-observed health protocol among other policies to curb COVID-19 transmission in establishments and company vehicles, the head of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said Thursday.
DTI Sec. Ramon Lopez said in a public briefing that they've observed that out of 25,274 workplaces and shuttles monitored from June 2020 to April 2021, only 42% to 82% of individuals followed the "no talking, no eating" rule.
"Dito po mababa at kailangan paigtingin ang compliance dito. Kumbaga nagsasama sa kainan, sa pantry, sa canteen at dapat binabawal na ho natin ngayon 'yan. Ang ideal kaniya-kaniya, individual po," Lopez said.
Wearing of proper face shields in company transportation and establishments was the second least-followed health protocol, with only 73% to 91% compliance rate. Lopez said that in construction sites, only 38% workers followed this rule but he noted that this is allowed due to the nature of their job.
"Ina-allow naman po na tanggalin ang face shield lalo na kung kailangan mo ng very good visual sa inyong trabaho," he said.
Other health protocols also had the following compliance rates:
- Symptomatic or positives must be isolated: 56% to 100%
- Frequent and proper disinfection: 71% to 100%
- Adequate ventilation: 83% to 100%
- Wearing of proper face mask: 88% to 100%
- Appropriate physical distancing 88% to 100%
- Operational capacity (half of usual workforce, passengers): 96% to 100%
Establishments considered non-essential in the Philippines again closed on March 29 after government decided to place Metro Manila and nearby provinces under the strictest quarantine level due to surging COVID-19 cases, a year after it was first implemented.
The lockdown was lifted last Monday, but business enterprises are still struggling to re-open due to loss of income and budget cuts which were caused by last year's nationwide quarantine and exacerbated by the recent lockdown.
To date, the Philippines has registered a total of 904,285 COVID-19 cases with 15,594 deaths and 705,164 recoveries. Active infections stand at 183,527.