UP research calls for MECQ in Davao, NCR with rise in COVID-19 cases

May. 29, 2020

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Government should place high risk areas of COVID-19 such as Davao City and National Capital Region under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), a research group from University of the Philippines says.

The group, composed of faculty and alumni of UP issued a report titled COVID-19 Forecasts in the Philippines: First Week of MECQ on May 26. They urged the government to review the minimum health safeguards and quarantine mechanisms in high-risk areas.

Davao City along with the National Capital Region, Regions II, III, IVA, the provinces of Pangasinan and Albay are placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) on May 16 up to June 15 by the Inter-agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases.

The city was placed under the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) for a month prior to the shift to GCQ after recording the most cases of COVID-19 infection in Mindanao.

But the group’s report note that coronavirus cases have increased in Davao after GCQ.

“Davao City had an increase in new COVID-19 cases, and its average for the week of May 19 to 25 is 3.4 new COVID-19 cases per day per million of population. Its R-value is 2.41, hence it is currently classified as “High Risk,” the report said.

The group has recommended continuing the MECQ status in NCR and other high-risk areas like Davao City, Bataan, and Laguna.

The team is composed Prof. Guido David, Ranjit Singh Rye and Maria Patricia Agbulos, with fellows and associates of OCTA Research.

Areas under General Community Quarantine will allow limited movement on services and work, with government offices and industries allowed to operate a maximum of 75% workforce, as stated by the Task Force guidelines.

Transportation services, according to the resolution, are limited to support the government and private operations.

Education will follow the flexible learning arrangements and asked to operate at limited capacities to cater to students.

Areas under Modified General Community Quarantine as per omnibus guidelines state a transition between GCQ and the “New “Normal with a more relaxed and less necessary temporary measures in terms of transportation, operating industries and the presence of uniformed personnel in enforcing quarantine protocols. (davaotoday.com)

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