Another month of GCQ for NCR, other areas
Market goers at Brgy. Quirino 3A in Project 3, Quezon City observes social distancing in this photo taken March 22, 2020.
The STAR/Michael Varcas, file

Another month of GCQ for NCR, other areas

Christina Mendez (The Philippine Star) - February 28, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Metro Manila, some areas in the Cordillera Autonomous Region and five other cities and provinces will remain under general community quarantine (GCQ) for the whole month of March, as the country awaits the arrival of vaccines for COVID-19.

The decision, made by President Duterte, followed a report of 2,921 new virus infections yesterday, the highest daily increase in more than four months.

The most relaxed modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) is in place in the rest of the country.

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said Metro Manila or the National Capital Region (NCR), Baguio City and Batangas in Luzon; some areas in CAR including Apayao, Kalinga and Mountain Province; Tacloban City in the Visayas and Davao City, Iligan City and Lanao del Sur in Mindanao will remain under GCQ.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Jnfectious Diseases (IATF) has also eased travel restrictions by no longer requiring swab tests and quarantine for domestic travel.

With southeast Asia’s second highest tally of infections and deaths, the Philippines has suffered lengthy, strict lockdowns in Manila and some provinces, hitting an economy that was among Asia’s fastest growing before the pandemic.

Metro Manila accounts for 40 percent of national economic output.

Despite calls to further re-open the economy, Duterte has pledged to maintain curbs in the virus epicenter of Metro Manila until mass vaccinations begin.

The Philippines will be the last in the region to get its first shipment of vaccines, comprising 600,000 doses of Sinovac Biotech’s vaccines donated by China, to be delivered today and earmarked for health care workers and troops.

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