Malacañang on Thursday (May 21) clarified that the Philippines is still experiencing the first wave of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), contrary to the statement of Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III.
The Palace apologized for the confusion and worry brought by Duque’s statement and said there were varying interpretations of the data.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque insisted that the country is still in the first wave of the COVID-19 infection.
“Nagpapatuloy po ang first wave. Katunayan, nagpatuloy ito sa buwan ng Pebrero na may kaunti kasi na na-report at lumobo sa buwan ng March. Patuloy pong lumobo iyan hanggang sa buwan ng Mayo, kung saan nakikita natin ngayon na bumababa na (The first wave continues. In fact, it continued from February, with few reports, and ballooned in March. It continues to increase untilMay, where we can see there is a decline),” he said.
Roque also said Duque did not go through the protocol to inform President Rodrigo Duterte regarding the interpretation of the second wave.
However, the Palace official said the varying of opinions is not of importance and the government, including the public, should focus on how to prevent a second wave of COVID-19 infections.
“Ang importante maiwasan po ang pagbalik ng malawakang numero ng magkakasakit sa COVID-19. Nagkakaisa po ang gobyerno na gagawin ang lahat ng hakbang upang maiwasan ang second wave (What’s important is, we prevent another increase in the number of COVID-19 cases. The government is united in doing everything to prevent a second wave),” Roque said. –AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
Israeli inventors have developed a coronavirus mask that allows diners to eat food without taking it off, a device that could make a visit to a restaurant less risky.
A squeeze of a lever, much like a cyclist operates a handbrake, opens a slot in the front of the mask so that food can pass through.
The process could get messy with ice cream or sauces, but more solid morsels can be gobbled up in a flash in the style of Pac-Man in the iconic video game.
“The mask will be opened mechanically by hand remote or automatically when the fork is coming to the mask,” said Asaf Gitelis, vice president of Avtipus Patents and Inventions, who demonstrated the device at its offices near Tel Aviv.
“Then you can eat, enjoy, drink and you take out the fork and it will be closed, and you’re protected against the virus and other people sitting with you.”
The company said it plans to start manufacturing the mask within months and had already submitted a patent. It said it would likely sell at a 3 to 10 shekel ($0.85 to $2.85) premium above the price of the simple pale blue medical masks many Israelis wear.
Outside a juice bar in Tel Aviv, Reuters showed a cellphone video of the mask in action. Opinion was divided.
“I think this mask that enables me to eat while I’m still wearing it, it’s a must have,” said Ofir Hameiri, a 32-year-old graduate student.
But maskless and eating an ice cream cone, Ron Silberstein, a 29-year-old musician, said: “I don’t think this mask could hold this kind of ice cream – it’s dripping all over. I wouldn’t want to wear it afterward”.
Israel has largely reopened its economy after a dramatic drop in cases of the novel coronavirus. But restaurants are open only for takeout for the time being. (Reuters)
(Production: Eli Berlzon, Rami Amichai, Rinat Harash, Jeffrey Heller)
MANILA, Philippines – Inatasan na ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte ang Department of Budget and Management (DB M) na humanap ng dagdag na pondo para sa pamamahagi ng ikalawang bugso ng government cash aid sa ilalim ng Social Amelioration Program (SAP).
Ayon kay Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, inutusan na ng pangulo si DBM Secretary Wendel Avisado na gumawa ng listahan ng mga ahensiyang maaaring pagkunan ng kinakailangang pondo para sa second tranche ng SAP.
Nasa 18 milyong mahihirap na pamilya sa bansa ang unang target na mabigyan ng ayuda sa ilalim ng government emergency subsidy program.
Aabot sa P205 milyon ang inilaang pondo para sa programa, batay sa nakasaad sa Bayanihan to Heal as One Act.
Ngunit matapos ang pamamahagi ng unang batch ng pinansiyal na ayuda, nadagdagan pa ng limang milyon ang bilang ng pamilya na humihingi ng tulong mula sa pamahalaan dahil sa matinding hirap na dinaranas sa gitna ng COVID-19 crisis.
Inaprubahan na ng pangulo ang dagdag na benepisyaryo ng programa kaya’t kailangan ngayon ng pamahalaan ng dagdag na pondo para tustusan ito.
“Inaatasan niya si DBM Secretary Wendel Avisado, suriin niya ang mga budgetary allocations ng line agencies. Tingnan kung magkano ang pwedeng ma-realign dahil nais niya sana kung pwedeng bigyan lahat ng 23 million families ng ayuda ng 2nd tranche din,” ani Roque.
Una nang inamin ng administrasyong Duterte na paubos na ang pondo ng pamahalaan para sa COVID-19 response at hindi pa tiyak kung saan kukunin ang perang ipang-aayuda sa mga labis na naapektuhan ng krisis.
Nanawagan na rin ang pangulo sa liderato ng Kongreso na tumulong sa paghahanap ng pondo para sa mga programa ng gobyerno. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Rosalie Coz)
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