‘Spike in COVID-19 cases won’t delay Baguio reopening’

Artemio Dumlao - The Philippine Star
âSpike in COVID-19 cases wonât delay Baguio reopeningâ
This undated photo shows tourists riding a boat on a man-made lake in Burnham Park in Baguio City.
DOT, Release

BAGUIO CITY, Philippines — It’s all systems go for the reopening of this city to local tourists despite an increase in the number of coronavirus disease 2019 or COVID-19 cases.

Mayor Benjamin Magalong said the outbreak of confirmed cases in three barangays was due to aggressive contact tracing.

“We don’t expect the outbreak to affect our tourism plan... We know where the cases are coming from and containment measures had been done before their diagnosis came,” Magalong said.

He said the number of cases is expected to further increase because of continuing contact tracing and expanded testing.

City tourism operations officer Aloysius Mapalo said there are 398 user account registrations and 47 travel requests as of Sunday under the Visitors’ Information and Travel Assistance or VISITA.

The earliest travel request date is on Oct. 11.

“There is no approved travel yet pending completion of documents, including COVID-19 test results,” Mapalo said.

Only tourists from Ilocos region will be allowed to visit the city through guided tours under the first phase of the program. Phase two will include Cagayan Valley and Central Luzon while phase three will cover all the regions.

Baguio recorded 68 cases on Monday, the highest in a day. Fifty-six are police trainees who are part of a cluster of 83 cases.

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