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Davao City under GCQ again

 

BY ARGYLL GEDUCOS

 

 

Davao City has reverted to General Community Quarantine (GCQ) status until the end of the month due to the spike of COVID-19 cases, Malacañang announced Friday.

In a statement, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said that the Inter-agency Task Force (IATF) for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases approved the immediate reversion of Davao City to a stricter quarantine classification during their meeting Thursday.

In an interview with CNN Philippines, COVID-19 National Task Force (NTF) chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr. said there has been a 63 percent increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in President Duterte’s hometown in just a week.

Galvez said that the IATF found the recent spike as “alarming” and that they made the “collective decision” because there was a need to intervene to prevent a wider outbreak in Davao City.

“Ito po ay nakita po namin na talagang dapat i-akyat ang restriction,” Galvez told “The Source.”

According to Galvez, one of the possible reasons for the increase in COVID-19 cases was the relaxation of quarantine restrictions as Davao City was already under the modified GCQ (MGCQ).

“Nakikita po natin na ‘yung lahat ng mga lugar, mga cities na bumaba sa MGCQ ay talaga pong nagkaroon ng relaxation ng restrictions at saka nagkaroon ng masyadong kumpiyansa ang mga tao,” he said.

Roque said that NTF deputy chief implementer for the cities of Bacolod and Davao Melquiades Feliciano has been asked to head the Coordinated Operations to Defeat the Epidemic (CODE) teams that will be deployed to Davao City to assist in the response activities.

A One Hospital Command Center will likewise be established in the city to ensure an efficient referral system as private hospitals are mandated to increase their ward bed occupancy by at least 20 percent to 30 percent.

Roque assured the people of Davao City that the government is undertaking steps to address the shortage of nurses in health facilities and provide additional high-oxygen cannulae, Favipiravir (Avigan), Remdesivir, and medical equipment, among others.

Accommodation establishments will also be tapped to serve as quarantine facilities for health workers as well as the isolation of positive cases of COVID-19.

According to Roque, law enforcement agencies are directed to assist in the enforcement of granular lockdowns in the affected communities or clusters, and if necessary, deploy personnel in the city.

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