MANILA — (UPDATED) Metro Manila and several other areas will keep current restrictions against COVID-19 until the end of January, Malacañang said on Friday, even as coronavirus infections continued to climb.
The capital region will stay under COVID-19 Alert 3 until Jan. 31, said Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles.
The third alert in a 5-level system bans face-to-face classes, contact sports, fun fairs, and casinos.
It also limited to fully vaccinated individuals and reduced to 30 percent the indoor operating capacity of dine-in services, religious gatherings, fitness studios, personal care services, and recreational venues.
Other areas under Alerts 3 and 2 from Jan. 16 to 31 include the following, Nograles said.
Government earlier announced the following areas would be under Alert 3 from Jan. 14 to 31.
No area in the country is currently under Alert 4. This alert level is raised if at least 71 percent of an area's healthcare capacity has been used, said Nograles.
Metro Manila has used 58 percent of ICU beds, 54 percent of isolation beds, and 66 percent of ward beds as of Thursday, based on Nograles' slide show.
Authorities are making sure that hospital beds are “reserved to those who need it most,” including the elderly, people with comorbidity, and patients with severe or critical COVID-19, said the Palace official.
Patients who have mild symptoms or are asymptomatic should be brought to isolation facilities or can quarantine at home and tap telemedicine, Nograles said.
The Philippines on Thursday reported a record-high 34,021 new COVID-19 cases, raising the country's total confirmed infections to 3,092,409, data from the Department of Health showed.
The positivity rate was at record-high 47.9 percent, nearly tenfold the World Health Organization's 5 percent positivity rate benchmark.