MANILA - Physical distancing and avoiding mass gatherings, along with other safety precautions, should still be practiced even after the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon is lifted, a Department of Health (DOH) official said Monday night.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire, in an interview on DZMM, said physical distancing and other measures implemented to halt the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) will be considered the "new normal" once the lockdown is lifted.
"We would still maintain physical distancing every where we go. Pangalawa ho, titingnan pa rin natin yung ia-avoid pa rin natin yung mass gatherings," she said.
(We would still maintain physical distancing every where we go. Second, we are still looking at avoiding mass gatherings.)
She also said that these rules would also be considered in the reopening of schools and offices.
"Makikita po natin kung magbubukas na tayo ng mga eskuwelahan. Ang mga trabaho po ba ay magiging mas flexible para magtalaga ng work-from-home arrangements," Vergeire said.
(We will see if we will reopen schools. In the offices, will it be more flexible, will there be work-from-home arrangements.)
"So kung dumating man tayo sa May 1 o May 2 na 'yan na at ili-lift ang ECQ, makikita pa rin natin, we are not totally going to stop our measures because we know na may rebound ang sakit na ito kung totally tatanggalin mo ang mga measures na ito," she added.
(So when we reach May 1 or May 2 and the lockdown is lifted, we will that we are not totally going to stop our measures because we know that this illness can recur if we remove these measures.)
The Philippines as of Monday confirmed 4,932 cases of the disease, with 315 deaths and 242 patients who recovered.
All households in Luzon, home to half of the Philippines' 100-million population, are under quarantine until April 30 to stop the pandemic.