Misamis Oriental confirms detection of one Delta variant case; pushes for stricter measure

Maris Federez   •   July 21, 2021   •   205

Misamis Oriental Governor Yevgeny Vincent “Bambi” Emano on Tuesday confirmed the detection a Delta variant case in the province.

On Tuesday’s edition of the government’s Laging Handa program, Emano reported that the local government has conducted isolation on the family of the individual who was found positive for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Delta variant.

“Sa awa ng Dios ang mga kasamahan niya sa bahay ay na-isolate na natin. Started with one worker of the bank and ito pong katulong niya. Tapos randomly nakunan ng blood sample para dun sa UP Genome Center and found out to be positive dun sa Delta variant,” the governor said.

Emano said two of the four close contacts were found negative for COVID-19 and the other two were found positive for the virus. Their blood samples were sent to Manila for genome sequencing to find out if the Delta variant has also spread within the family.

The governor said that while the provincial government is prepared should the result of the two blood samples yield positive, they will still push for stricter measures in the province that, to date, has 340 active COVID-19 cases, one of which is the said Delta variant positive.

“Sa pangunguna po ni chief Gerry Calingatan, ang PHO (Provincial Health Office) po natin at Task Force chief ng IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) ng Misamis Oriental […] nakahanda na po yung plano and stand by and awaiting si provincial director (Col. Raniel) Valones, and Lt.Col. (Ricky) Canatoy on how we will tighten the area pati yung Gingoog City,” Emano said.

“And within the province, sa awa ng Dios, ang ganda na po ng takbo ng mga local government units at MHOs (Municipal Health Office) […] Hopefully when we can get the nod of the IATF national that we will request for an ECQ (enhance community quarantine) for the province of Misamis Oriental so that we will be able to push stricter measures po,” he added.

The governor also admitted having difficulty implementing the different quarantine levels in the entire province. To address this, and upon the recommendation of the IATF Misamis Oriental, even those areas under the modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) are implementing restrictions applied in ECQ areas.

“For dining areas, kahit pwede kami sa 50%, ginawa naming 30%. So we follow the guidelines para hindi na mahirapan that every time na tatawid sa boundary, mapapabago-bago pa yung quarantine level,” he said.

On the other hand, the flow of businesses and transportation sector in the province has remained normal following the guidelines of the IATF, the provincial chief executive said.

Meanwhile, the governor has admitted to experiencing a low supply of COVID-19 vaccines.

He, however, said that the Department of Health regional office has assured that they will increase the allocation of the supply of the vaccine in the province in the next delivery.

“Sa kakulangan, yes, medyo may kulang talaga yung vaccine po natin. Kasi aside sa from the health workers na nag 109% na tayo, sa senior citizens at sa comorbidities, nasa 25% pa lang po tayo sa Misamis Oriental. Dahil nga […] yung allocation sa Misamis Oriental sobrang kokonti,” he said.

“Pero kung tingnan mo naman yung inoculation rate, sa rollout, pinakamataas nga sa buong Pilipinas ang Region 10 and isa yung Misamis Oriental na medyo mabilis mag-inoculate. Kaya nakiusap kami, sumulat ako kay Regional Director Lacuna na kahit magdadagan muna nang kahit 20,000 doses ang Misamis Oriental, hopefully, will help us contain and inoculate muna yung mga bayan malapit sa City of Cagayan de Oro and yung Gingoog City po,” he further stated.

He also assured high public acceptance of the vaccine rollout in the province. Local government units in the province, regardless of any political affiliation, are implementing strategies to encourage the citizens to undergo vaccination, such as discounts on utility bills and grocery purchases.

Emano urges the public to take heed of the guidelines of the local government units on fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. —/mbmf

NCR remains under GCQ with heightened restrictions until August 15

Marje Pelayo   •   July 29, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the extension of general community quarantine (GCQ) with heightened restrictions in the National Capital Region (NCR) until August 15, 2021.

The approval was based on the recommendations of the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) given the current COVID-19 situation in the country.

“Ginusto man niyo o hindi kailangan  itong ganitong patakaran for you to survive; para mabuhay kayo. As shown with what is happening in other countries, there is really a pandemic in the true sense of the word in Indonesia, India and Thailand,” the President said during the televised meeting on Wednesday (July 28).

The following quarantine classifications take effect in the following areas:

Enhanced Community Quarantine (August 1 – August 7)
Iloilo City
Cagayan de Oro
Gingoog City

Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (August 1 – August 15)
Ilocos Norte
Bataan
Lapu-Lapu City
Mandaue City

General Community Quarantine  with heightened restrictions (August 1- August 15)
National Capital Region
Ilocos Sur
Cagayan
Bulacan
Laguna
Lucena city
Cavite
Rizal
Naga City
Antique
Aklan
Bacolod City
Capiz
Negros oriental
Zamboanga del sur
Misamis Oriental
Davao City
Davao del Norte
Davao de Oro
Davao Occidental
Butuan City

General Community Quarantine  (August 1 – August 31)
Baguio City
Apayao
City of Santiago, Isabela
Nueva Vizcaya
Quirino
Quezon
Batangas
Puerto princesa
Guimaras
Negors occidental
Zamboanga Del Norte
Zamboanga Sibugay
City of Zamboanga
Davao Oriental
Davao Del Sur
General Santos City
Sultan Kudarat
Sarangani
North cotabato
South cotabato
Caraga
Agusan del norte
Surigao del norte
Agusan del sur
Dinagat islands
Surigao del sur
BARMM
Cotabato

Modified General Community Quarantine (MGCQ)
The rest of the country

Daily COVID-19 cases sa NCR, posibleng madoble kung hindi magpapatupad ng hard lockdown — OCTA

Robie de Guzman   •   July 28, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Naniniwala ang OCTA Research group na dapat magpatupad ang pamahalaan ng “circuit breaker” lockdown upang mapigil ang posibilidad ng lubhang pagkalat ng Delta COVID-19 variant sa bansa.

Ayon kay OCTA Research fellow Prof. Ranjit Rye, maaaring magpatupad ng dalawang linggong enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) o kaya ay modified ECQ upang hindi magaya ang Pilipinas sa sitwasyon sa mga kalapit bansa nang kumalat ang Delta variant.

“What we’re envisioning is something along MECQ, ECQ. They will depend on the government and the amount of precaution we need… It was a precautionary recommendation because of an impending, clear, and present danger post of Delta,” ani Rye.

Sa pagtaya ng grupo, kapag hindi naagapan ay maaaring makapagtala ng 1,500 hanggang 3,000 kaso ng COVID-19 kada araw sa National Capital Region sa susunod na dalawang linggo.

Ayon kay OCTA Research fellow Prof. David Guido, nasa 1.33 na ngayon ang COVID-19 reproduction number sa NCR.

Halos kapareho aniya ito ng reproduction rate nang magkaroon ng surge noong unang bahagi ng 2020.

“It looks like it is manageable this time but it may no longer be manageable if we wait too long, before we make a crucial decision in our pandemic management,” ani Guido.

“We are averaging 1,000 cases. Two weeks ago it was just 600, and we thought it was decreasing, but something is driving the pandemic and pushing the caseload higher,” dagdag pa niya.

Dapat ding iwasan na umabot pa ang bansa sa worst-case scenario at umabot sa critical level hanggang 100% full ang hospital capacity sa NCR sa buwan ng Agosto.

Kasabay ng mga paghihigpit ng quarantine classification ay ang tuloy tuloy at mas mabilis na COVID-19 vaccination sa bansa.

Inirerekomenda rin ng grupo na paikliin ang interval sa pagbibigay ng doses ng Sinovac at AstraZeneca vaccines.

“Ramp up vacination even while we’re on lockdown. We can still do it,” ani Rye.

“OCTA is exhorting government to focus on its plan, we believe its plan will work in which the NCR plus 10. I was told by Sec. (Carlito) Galvez some time in August, 2 million Moderna vaccines are coming through as a donation from the United States,” dagdag pa niya.

Samantala, inayunan naman ni Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Secretary Joey Concepcion ang panukalang ito ng OCTA.

“If the government, DOH Secretary Duque will push for a two-week hard lockdown, we will support it because we will prefer to solve the problem early and not wait for the problem to get bigger, then we will have to lockdown for months. That is the most catastrophic thing that could happen in our country if that happens in the 4th quarter,” ani Concepcion.

Una nang ipinahayag ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte sa kaniyang huling State of the Nation Address na kung kinakailangangan ay magpapatupad muli ng lockdown ang pamahalaan dahil sa banta ng Delta variant

Patuloy ang pakiusap ng mga awtoridad sa publiko na maging responsable, huwag magpakampante at magpabakuna na upang makaiwas sa mas mabagsik na Delta COVID-19 variant. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Aiko Miguel)

Close to 3,000 contact tracers trained; 1,800 deployed — TESDA

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 28, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) has announced that the government has already trained close to 3,000 contact tracers and has deployed almost 1,800 of them.

During a virtual public briefing on Wednesday (July 28), TESDA Deputy Director-General Aniceto Bertiz said that aside from the programs allotted for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) and individuals who lost their jobs to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, TESDA is also training individuals to become contact tracers.

“We were able to produce 2,978 contact tracers all over the country. Halos 1,800 of those are already hired sa mga local government unit (LGUs) (Almost 1,800 of those are already hired by local government units),” he said.

The TESDA official also said they continuously coordinating with LGUs and other industries for the new contact tracers to be hired especially amid the threat of the Delta variant.

Bertiz, meanwhile, said the free upskill training of TESDA will help in lowering the number of unemployed and underemployed Filipinos in the country.

Hinuhubog natin ang ating mga kababayan na magkaroon ng bagong kakayahan and at the same time, we are connecting them hanggang kabuhayan (We are honing our fellowmen to acquire new skills and at the same time, we are connecting them to have livelihood),” he said. -AAC

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