A resident of Addition Hills in Mandaluyong City carries his grocery on this May 6, 2020 photo.
The STAR/Michael Varcas
Gov’t eyes to limit lockdowns to zones by June
(Philstar.com) - May 22, 2020 - 2:59pm

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines may limit community quarantines to specific areas with cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) by June instead of implementing widespread lockdowns, the chief implementer of the national action plan against COVID-19 said.

Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said communities may be divided into zones based on incident rate and doubling time of cases.

“We will have a zoning concept,” Galvez said Friday when asked of possible quarantine measures to be implemented after May 31.

"We will only cordon off or impose lockdown on areas or compounds that are affected," Galvez said in Filipino.

The national government began relaxing coronavirus restrictions last week to revitalize the economy paralyzed by a two-month lockdown.

Virus hotspot Metro Manila along with Laguna, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga and Zambales shifted to a modified enhanced community quarantine that allowed more industries and sectors to open.

Only Cebu City and Mandaue City in Central Visayas remain under enhanced community quarantine, while other parts of the country are under general community quarantine.

Galvez earlier said that the government may implement lockdowns at the barangay level to minimize the impact of the pandemic on the economy.

The Philippines on Thursday reported 213 new COVID-19 cases, pushing the nation’s tally to 13,434. — Gaea Katreena Cabico

As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: June 4, 2020 - 12:33pm

Metro Manila and other “highrisk” areas were placed under a modified enhanced community quarantine last May 16, which is more relaxed than ECQ, but has more restrictions compared with the general community quarantine (GCQ). Bookmark this page for updates. Photo by The STAR/Michael Varcas

June 4, 2020 - 12:33pm

The inter-agency task force on COVID-19 revises its guidelines on the movement of persons in areas under modified general community quarantine.

Under IATF Resolution 43, persons below 21 years old, 60 years old and above, with immunodeficiency, comorbodity, other health risks and pregnant women shall remain in their houses at all times.

Mass gatherings for religious services and work conferences will now be allowed in areas under modified general community quarantine, according to IATF Resolution 43. However, the gatherings should be limited to only 50% seating capacity.

May 31, 2020 - 11:43am

Business groups, including the Makati Business Club and Management Association of the Philippines, express disappointment at government officials "violating with impunity" the very same quarantine protocols the government has imposed.

Noting how government have affected millions, the groups say they are "disappointed — even appalled and dismayed — about news reports of public officials violating with impunity the IATF and DOH protocols intended to protect public health."

The statement was signed by MBC, MAP, the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines, Canadian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, Financial Executives of the Philippines, Institute of Corporate Directors, Institute for Solidarity in Asia, and the Judicial Reform Initiative.

May 30, 2020 - 4:20pm

The Department of Tourism says they welcome the gradual re-opening of tourism operations in light of the varied community quarantine levels across the country.

“It's important for the tourism sector to open as soon as possible, albeit slowly, gradually and cautiously, so that those who lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be able to work and earn again.”, says Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat

Travel for tourism purposes may be allowed only between places under modified general community quarantine, and subject to travel restrictions imposed by the local government units.

May 30, 2020 - 1:41pm

The Department of Labor and Employment announces that over 22,000 overseas Filipino workers stranded in different quarantine facilities have so far been transported to their respective hometown,

DOLE Undersecretary Claro Arellano, citing a report from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration, says that as of 6 a.m. May 30, a total of 22,426 stranded OFWs have been released from quarantine facilities. 

"Of this figure, 19,042 were transported between May 25-28 and 3,384 were brought home on May 29 alone," he adds.

May 28, 2020 - 9:26pm

Duterte  says Metro Manila will be under general community quarantine from June 1.

Davao City, meanwhile, will remain under GCQ.

General Community Quarantine will also be implemented in the Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon and Calabarzon regions as well as in Pangasinan and Albay provinces.

"The rest of the country will be placed under Modified General Community Quarantine. That is very clear now," the president also says.

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