Do not allow a second wave
Caecent No-ot Magsumbol (The Freeman) - October 25, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  Cebu City must learn from the mistakes of other places in the continuing fight against COVID-19, and must not allow a second wave.

This is the message of Councilor Joel Garganera as the city starts to reap the fruits of its labor in curbing the spread of COVID-19.

The city has maintained its modified general community quarantine status since September and, as industries reopen, has started resuscitating its economy.

On Thursday, no less than Secretary Roy Cimatu gave the city a perfect 10 score for its strengthened COVID-19 response efforts spurred practically by Cimatu’s arrival in June to oversee enforcement of quarantine rules.

Based on October 23, 2020 data from the Department of Health (DOH), the city has 213 remaining active cases of its 10,205 total. It has not recorded deaths for at least a week.

While the city is seeing these positive developments, other parts of the world like in Europe are experiencing a resurgence of the virus after regulations were loosened up.

Garganera said epidemiology experts have noted that this is largely because of complacency.

In a report by the New York Times, Europe is averaging more than 100,000 new infections per day in early October, which accounts for about one-third of new cases reported worldwide.

“The resurgence has prompted officials to close bars and clubs in Prague and Liverpool, and to make face masks mandatory in public indoor spaces in Amsterdam,” the Times said.

In France, President Emmanuel Macron declared a state of emergency, putting a curfew in place from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. in the Paris region and eight other metropolitan areas. In Russia, President Vladimir Putin announced the country is approving a second vaccine.

Garganera said Cebu City must learn from the experience of these countries.

“Let us learn from their mistakes,” he said, urging residents to always observe minimum health protocols like wearing of mask and face shield, washing of hands, and maintaining considerable distance from other people when in public.

 “People, most of the time, take it different when experiencing little success,” he added.

Earlier, Garganera called on city residents to not forget the 677 lives COVID-19 has taken.

Of Cebu City’s 80 barangays, 44 are now zeroed-in transmission, and barangay are expected to work extra hard to eliminate the virus from their areas – what with the announcement of Mayor Edgardo Labella of a P100,000 reward for every barangay with zero cases in the next two months.

“The challenge is to sustain the gains they have achieved. The mayor’s reward is an added drive in achieving this goal,” Garganera said.

Further, Garganera asked residents to look back at the past few months and see if they want to experience another round of the sacrifice – being under enhanced community quarantine twice after a resurgence of cases after being under GCQ. — JMO (FREEMAN)

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