Philippines urged to tighten borders to keep out Delta variant


Posted at Jul 22 2021 02:10 PM | Updated as of Jul 22 2021 02:46 PM

Philippines urged to tighten borders to keep out Delta variant 1
Philippine Coast Guard personnel ask travelers for pertinent documents and information as they arrive at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 1 in Parañaque City on July 1, 2021. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA - A group of doctors on Thursday called on the government to impose tougher restrictions over travelers from Malaysia and Thailand in a bid to prevent the spread of Delta coronavirus variant.

"I-tighten up na siguro natin 'yung entry nila dito," Dr. Maricar Limpin, president of the Philippine College of Physicians, told Teleradyo's "On The Spot."

(Let's tighten up their entry here.)

"Kung ayaw ng gobyerno na'to, then ang gawin natin, allow natin sila na dumating dito pero quarantine sila for 14 days. Kailangang kumpletong 14 days regardless of whether may bakuna sila o wala," she added.

(If the government wouldn't do it, then what we should do is allow them to enter here but they should quarantine for 14 days. They must quarantine for a complete 14 days regardless of whether they're vaccinated or not.)

The Philippine government has imposed a travel ban until July 31 to travelers from from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, United Arab Emirates, Oman, and Indonesia.

Limpin made the statement in response to a proposal of including Malaysia and Thailand to the travel ban. Both countries are fighting increasing coronavirus infections linked to the more contagious Delta variant.

On Wednedsay, Malaysia reported 11,985 new COVID-19 cases, raising its tally to 951,884. Meanwhile, Thailand is experiencing its worst COVID-19 outbreak, logging daily record 13,002 coronavirus infections on Wednesday.

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In the interview, Limpin is also urging government units to tighten their borders anew due to Delta variant. However, she lamented that some local chief executives do not listen to the medical community.

"Parang hindi po kami pinakikinggan, lalong-lalo na 'yung mga kasamahan namin sa probinsiya," she said.

(It's as if we're not being listened, especially to our colleagues in the provinces.)

She called for standard border control measures across the country.

"Dapat 'yung border control natin standard po 'yan kahit saan ka magpunta sa Pilipinas," she said.

"Hindi 'yung pinababayaan lang natin 'yung mga LGU sa kanilang mga diskarte."

"Yung ibang local chief executives, hindi marunong makinig. Matitigas din ang mga ulo," she added.

(Our border control should be standard wherever you go in the Philippines. We should not just leave it to the ways of LGUs. Some local chief executives don't listen. They're stubborn.)