Duterte: Face shields a factor in reducing COVID cases in PH

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 22 2021 08:16 AM | Updated as of Dec 22 2021 11:23 AM

Church goers wear face masks and face shields at the Our Lady of Remedies Parish, Malate, Manila on Nov. 8, 2021. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File
Church goers wear face masks and face shields at the Our Lady of Remedies Parish, Malate, Manila on Nov. 8, 2021. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA—President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday urged the public to continue using face shields as an added precaution against COVID-19 and its vastly mutated omicron variant. 

Duterte acknowledged "some countries even criticized us" for requiring the plastic face coverings in public spaces. 

But he said: "Nakakatulong sa Pilipino sa totoo lang (In truth, it helped Filipinos). I think the compliance of our citizens in the matter of strictly enforcing the masks. And when somebody . . . While it might be not really a well-studied proposition but I would dare say that (the face) shield will add another layer of protection." 

"Kaya ‘yung talagang gustong hindi kayo matamaan, huwag ninyong itapon ‘yung shield (If you don't want to contract COVID, don't throw away your face shield). Continue using it, I advise you, because I really firmly believe that the wearing of that face shield has contributed a lot," Duterte added in a speech that aired Wednesday overnight. 

"I cannot quantify or by what percentage but it’s just a gut feeling na ‘yung kasi tayo mababa na tayo ngayon (because our COVID cases are low)."

COVID-19 cases have dropped to an average of 378 a day in December from the peak of 18,579 daily in September. 

The country has detected 3 imported cases of the omicron variant reportedly driving a surge in coronavirus infections in several countries. 

The government previously required the use of face shields in all public areas. In mid-November, it made face shields voluntary in areas under COVID-19 Alerts 1 to 3. 

The whole Philippines will be under Alert 2 until the end of the year. 

— With reports from Jamaine Punzalan, ABS-CBN News; Reuters 

Video courtesy of PTV