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DOH won’t consult mayors on alert level

Shiela Crisostomo - The Philippine Star
DOH wonât consult mayors on alert level
In an interview with “The Chiefs” on OneNews on Thursday night, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they “do not consult anybody” with regards to the alert level system.
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MANILA, Philippines — Following complaints by some mayors that they were not consulted when the National Capital Region (NCR) was downgraded to Alert Level 3, the Department of Health (DOH) said that it is not about to do so.

In an interview with “The Chiefs” on OneNews on Thursday night, DOH Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said they “do not consult anybody” with regards to the alert level system.

“This is a metric system coming from the DOH wherein we classify areas according to risk,” she said.

Vergeire maintained that the DOH does consult local government units on “interventions and actions” they have to take concerning their alert level status.

In a press briefing yesterday, she said the alert level system is “not appealable.”

“The alert level is not subject to discussions or debate. This is not even subject to appeals… They are in Alert Level 3 because their metrics already warranted a de-escalation,” she added.

Among the parameters DOH took into consideration was the NCR’s health care utilization rate, which is now at moderate risk.

Vergeire said the total bed utilization in NCR is “just about 50-plus percent” while its ICU utilization is about 65 percent.

She added that even the current risk classification of the region for COVID-19 cases is also moderate.

Earlier, Navotas Mayor Toby Tiangco complained that NCR mayors were not consulted about the relaxation of quarantine restrictions in the region.

Metro Manila was placed under Alert Level 3 from Oct. 16 to 31 as COVID-19 cases in the region continued to drop.

Under Alert Level 3, business establishments are allowed to operate at 30 percent of indoor venue capacity for fully vaccinated customers and up to 50 percent outdoor capacity.

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