The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) is set to deploy 10,000 policemen in Metro Manila this holiday season.
NCRPO Chief PBGen. Vicente Danao Jr. said the deployed officers will man crowded areas including malls, terminals, and train stations.
“I’m tasking them to maximize the visibility all over NCR, I wanted them to be in any places of convergence in the whole Metro Manila,” he said.
The PNP also reminded the public to be smart and vigilant when going out during the holiday season.
The National Police released an advisory encouraging the public to follow health protocols and opt for online shopping, if possible.
PNP Chief PGen. Debold Sinas said they want to maximize police visibility not just to prevent crime, but to also make sure the public is practicing physical distancing amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.
“Ang importante sa amin na nakalagay sa direktiba ay iyong mga social distancing. So magpalabas po kami ng directive na habang nagbubukas iyong community natin dumadami na ang tao sa labas (What’s important for us, which is stated in our directive, is social distancing. So we will release a directive as communities reopen and more people go outside),“ he said.
Sinas also confirmed the PNP will remain in full alert status this holiday season. AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)
MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte announced on Monday evening (November 30) the new round of community quarantines from December 1 until December 31, 2020.
Aside from Metro Manila, other areas placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) include Batangas, Iloilo City, Tacloban City, Lanao Del Sur, Iligan City, Davao City and Davao Del Norte.
Meanwhile, the rest of the country remains under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) until the end of the year.
Given the new restrictions, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III reminds all agencies and local government units to intensify information campaigns on health protocols this holiday season.
“Mabuting manatili sa bahay, at magkaroon lamang ng maliit na salo-salo kasama ang immediate family members upang maiwasan tayong mahawa at ang ating mga kapamilya, (It would be best to just stay at home and have a small buffet with immediate family members to avoid getting infected and transmission among family members),” said Duque.
This was supported by Interior Secretary Eduardo Año adding that it would be best to refrain from large gatherings like partying and caroling.
“Iyon pong family reunion ay considered mass gathering, katulad po ng sinabi ni Sec. Duque, immediate family lang sana ang mag-celebrate at kailangan po ang minimum health standard ay ipatutupad (Family reunions are considered mass gathering. Like what Sec. Duque said, it would be best to celebrate with immediate family and minimum health standards are observed),” he said.
Duque said the Department of Health (DOH) is now preparing its facilities in anticipation of the the surge in COVID-19 cases after the holidays.
For President Duterte, still the best preventive measures against any infectious disease is proper hand washing, wearing of facemask, and staying at home. MNP (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
MANILA, Philippines – Areas with high cases of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) such as Metro Manila, Davao, and Cebu will be prioritized in the distribution of the vaccine once it becomes available, National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Carlito Galvez Jr. said.
Galvez said this is part of the government’s strategy for the conduct of COVID-19 mass immunization in adherence to the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte to prioritize the poor and government frontliners in the vaccination.
During a meeting of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) in Davao City on Monday, Galvez said they will employ two strategies in the distribution of the vaccine – geographical and sectoral.
Once the infected areas have been selected, vaccines will then be distributed to the target beneficiaries.
The vaccine czar expressed confidence that this strategies will help the country contain the spread of the virus and recover from economic losses due to the pandemic.
“And then from geographical magiging sectoral. Meaning, kung sino ‘yung priority natin ‘no, for example sa Manila, ‘yung urban poor uunahin po natin ‘yon; ‘yung mga vulnerable uunahin po natin doon; ‘yung mga sundalong naka-assign sa NCR uunahin po natin at saka po ‘yung mga essential workers,” Galvez said.
“Iyon po mayroon pong impact ‘yon kaagad sa ating economy at may impact kaagad na ma-contain po kaagad. So ang strategy po natin, Mr. President, po is geographical, priority ang NCR, priority ang Davao dahil ang Davao po ngayon umaakyat din, priority ‘yung Cebu, priority po ‘yung mga Bacolod, ‘yung mga tinamaan po ng mabibigat ng COVID,” he added.
Immunizing areas with high number of COVID-19 infections will help the government in its assessment on the efficacy of the vaccines, according to Galvez.
So far, several vaccine developers are set to conduct clinical trials in the Philippines. These include Sinovac, Hansen, Johnson & Johnson, Gamaleya, AstraZeneca, and CanSino.
Duterte earlier allowed the release of advance payment to companies developing potential COVID-19 vaccine to secure the country’s supply as recommended by Galvez.
With the president’s approval, the vaccine czar said the government can now proceed with Advance Market Commitment and start negotiating with big pharmaceutical companies such as China’s Sinovac, AstraZeneca, and Pfizer.
He added that the government can secure advance commitment with Astra Zeneca for 20 million doses this month.
Galvez earlier projected that the vaccine supply can be made available by the second quarter of 2021 once an agreement has been signed.
The Philippine government previously said it is looking at multilateral financing institutions such as the World Bank (WB) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to finance vaccine procurements.
Local banks such as the Land Bank of the Philippines and Development Bank of the Philippines are also possible sources of funds.
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