Gov't mulls more pilot areas for COVID-19 alert system


Posted at Oct 18 2021 06:18 PM

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The government has started discussing the potential expansion of the COVID-19 alert system that it tested in Metro Manila for a month in a bid to curb coronavirus infections and spur business activity, an adviser said on Monday. 

The capital region's 13.5 million people tested the 5-step alert system and accompanying granular lockdowns starting mid-September. The area shifted to Alert 3 from Alert 4 on Saturday, allowing more businesses to reopen. 

"Iyong pag-start po ng ating mga other pilot areas, pinag-uusapan na po sa IATF (inter-agency task force on COVID-19). Hintayin lang po natin iyong mga anunsiyo which areas these are," said infectious disease expert Dr. Edsel Salvaña, a member of the health department's Technical Advisory Group. 

(The start of our other pilot areas is being discussed in the IATF. Let us just wait for the announcement on which areas these are.)

"Pero mukhang there are places naman, lalo na iyong mataas na iyong level ng pagbabakuna, na more or less we can try to transition to these granular lockdowns kasi alam naman po natin mabigat talaga ang epekto ng ating widespread lockdowns sa ating ekonomiya," he added.

(But it appears there are places, especially those with high vaccination levels, that more or less we can try to transition to these granular lockdowns because we know the effect of widespread lockdowns to our economy.)

The Philippines has recorded 2.7 million overall coronavirus infections. It has so far vaccinated at least 24 million of its 109 million people.