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Pasay City Mayor Emi Calixto-Rubiano

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Congressman pushes selective quarantine lifting 

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A party-list lawmaker pushed for a selective quarantine lifting in provinces or municipalities with zero to one case of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

In a statement, Ako Bicol party-list Rep. Elizaldy Co said the lifting of quarantine in select areas would help restart economic activities and ease the government's burden amid the Covid-19 crisis.

“The objective of quarantine lifting is to allow people, albeit in limited numbers and in select localities, to return to their jobs. We’re fighting a protracted war and until no vaccine is invented, the government’s limited resources can’t support and feed all those who were displaced. We need to save government funds for the long battle,” Co said.

Co said as more Filipinos get tested, the government can identify the areas most affected by the virus and implement a selective quarantine in those areas.

“With sufficient data, the government can plan and identify which areas can reopen or remain in full lockdown. If we implement selective quarantine, initial estimates indicate that we can save as much as PHP30 billion,” he said.

Co, however, said each qualified province or municipality must adhere to strict terms and conditions.

One term in the conditional quarantine lifting is that residents, who are 60 years old and older, are required to stay home since they are prone to acquiring the disease.

Co said provinces or municipalities whose number of cases is less than 75 percent of the estimated outbreak threshold may not implement an enhanced community quarantine at all.

“But their boundaries/borders shall remain close or on full lockdown. This is to protect the safe territory and its people from possible carriers of the disease from other provinces/municipalities,” he said.

He said workers with face masks can report back to work while observing a three-meter physical distance from one another.

He said that once a Covid-19 case is detected and confirmed, the entire province or municipality will automatically be placed on a 30-day lockdown.


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