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IATF approves limited resumption of dine-in, personal care services

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IATF approves limited resumption of dine-in, personal care services
In this June 2020 photo, a staff member of a restaurant attends to a customer through a plastic sheet used as a divider as part of measures aimed at preventing the spread of the COVID-19.
AFP / Ted Aljibe

MANILA, Philippines — The coronavirus task force on Thursday said dine-in and personal care services can now resume at a limited capacity in areas under Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said food establishments in MECQ areas will be allowed to serve dine-in customers at 10% capacity, while barbershops, salons, parlors and nail spas can take in up to 30% capacity.

Duterte retained MECQ in Metro Manila, Cavite, Rizal, Laguna and Bulacan until May 14. Santiago City in Isabela and the provinces of Quirino and Abra are also under MECQ.

"These establishments shall only provide services that can accommodate the wearing of face masks at all times by clients and service providers," Roque said.

The Department of Trade and Industry earlier Thurday recommended opening up additional businesses and allowing more workers to return.

IATF recommendations are subject to President Rodrigo Duterte's approval.

Safety Seal Certification

Roque said food and personal care establishments may operate beyond the set capacities if they can comply with the recently issued Safety Seal Certification program.

Joint Memorandum Circular No. 21-01 series of 2021 "affirms" that an establishment has been found compliant with minimum public health protocols, which includes the adoption of the StaySafe app in its contact tracing.

RELATEDGuidelines out for safety seal in establishments

As April comes to a close, the Philippines continues to report a high number of new COVID-19 cases a day. The recent lowest since the surge began in March was 6,895 on Wednesday, but health authorities have said that decrease in infections are still due to fewer screening facilities submitting data or lesser samples being tested.

The OCTA Research has said too that if more businesses would be allowed to reopen, it should be those that would not create more risk of virus' transmission. They warned that relaxing curbs this early could mean a heavier burden for the country in case of a new surge while hospitals remain full.

DEPARTMENT OF TRADE AND INDUSTRY

GREATER MANILA AREA

MODIFIED ENHANCED COMMUNITY QUARANTINE

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