Angono using color-coded flags to identify communities with COVID-19 cases

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 01 2020 07:42 PM

A policeman monitors the community distribution of face masks during the launch of C.O.D.E. or the Coordinated Operations to Defeat Epidemic organized by the government’s COVID-response team and the provincial government of Rizal at the Ynares Center, Ynares Compound, Antipolo City on August 12, 2020. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/file

The municipal government of Angono, Rizal has decided to use color-coded flags mounted on bamboo poles to identify barangays with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. 

Municipal administrator Alan Maniaol said a red flag indicated an active COVID-19 case, a green flag means there are recovering patients, and a white flag means there are probable or suspected cases of COVID-19 still waiting for their swab test results.

Maniaol described the initiative as innovative, and said the method was not discriminatory.

He also assured the public the name of the patients in the area with COVID-19 cases will not be disclosed.

The initiative is part of the municipality’s zoning containment strategy as mandated by the National Task Force on COVID-19 he added.

“Sinasabing pwedeng mag-lockdown o mag-implement ng localized lockdown sa streets at blocks, etc., depende sa parameter of the number of cases. Understandable na sa tao na ang lugar na ito maraming cases ng COVID-19, kaya naisipan naming maglagay ng flaglets," he said. 

Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office head Arnold Piñon, meanwhile, said a community or street can have two or even three flags hoisted all at the same time.

Some residents in Rizal have also requested that the places with coronavirus cases be identified so they could take extra precautionary measures, Piñon said. 

Angono has 10 barangays, but as of posting time only four barangays have complied with the directive.

“Iba ginagawa na nila. Kung di sila makapagcomply, kami na po. Bibigyan namin sila ng ilang araw para magcomply dito,” Piñon said.

Some residents have welcomed the initiative, saying this will serve as an awareness and deterrent to them.

As of September 30, Angono has recorded 485 COVID-19 cases, with 399 recoveries and 17 deaths. There are currently 69 active cases in the municipality. -- Bianca Dava, ABS-CBN News