Tokyo 2020 expects to secure all venues for Games — local media

UNTV News   •   July 9, 2020   •   537

Tokyo Olympics organizers expect to be able to use all the venues as originally planned at next year’s rearranged Games, several Japanese media outlets reported on Thursday (July 9).

Securing venues was a top priority for organisers after the Games were pushed back to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and Kyodo and NHK, citing unnamed sources, said they were now confident they would be tied down for Olympics use again.

However, at his regular weekly news conference, Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya said the reports were “optimistic” and that nothing had been announced.

Last month, Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto said 80% of all venues needed had been secured, with the Athlete’s Village and Tokyo Big Sight, the planned media centre, among those yet to be fully secured.

Thursday’s reports also said the competition schedule would remain largely unchanged and that all tickets holders would be eligible for refunds, and that organisers would seek approval of these decisions from the IOC’s General Assembly on July 17.

Asked to confirm those details, Takaya said nothing had been decided and Tokyo 2020 did not expect to seek approval from the IOC next week. (Reuters)

(Production: Jack Tarrant)

Temporary vaccination facility soon to rise in Nayong Pilipino

Marje Pelayo   •   April 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF)  has approved the construction of a vaccination facility at the Nayong Pilipino compound in Paranaque City, the Department of Tourism (DOT) confirmed Monday (April 12).

A DOT-attached agency, the Nayong Pilipino Foundation (NPF) agreed to use a vacant lot in the area to help in the government’s vaccination program.

“This is expected to be a game-changer in the vaccination program. The facility, which will be a public-private partnership, is expected to vaccinate at least 12,000 people a day,” the DOT said in a statement.

The project will be made possible through an agreement between the National Task Force against COVID-19 (NTF) and the Nayong Pilipino Foundation, whose board had already given its preliminary approval of the project to ensure its immediate execution.

DOST to conduct clinical trials on ivermectin if DOH, FDA order so

Marje Pelayo   •   April 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is maintaining its position regarding calls for clinical trials on veterinary drug ivermectin as treatment for coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Secretary Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said clinical trial projects will require six months and can extend to years.

He added that since there are almost 20 completed and 40 ongoing clinical trials around the world on ivermectin, it would be appropriate to await the results of these studies.

De la Peña noted, however, that they will heed the directive of the Department of Health (DOH) or the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should they require the DOST to conduct a trial.

“Kung sasabihan kami ng ahensya tulad ng DOH or FDA na mag-conduct ng clinical trial ay aming susundin ang kanilang advise,” the official said during Monday (April 12) edition of Laging Handa Briefing.

According to the FDA, the registered ivermectin products in the country for human use are in topical formulations under prescription use only.

This is used for the treatment of external parasites such as head lice and skin conditions such as rosacea.

As for the results of the clinical trial, De la Peña said there is still no clear details as to whether or not ivermectin is effective against COVID-19.

“According to DOH walang maliwanag na iyon [ivermectin] ay nakakabuti sa [pasyente na may] COVID -19,” he said.

He also also suggested waiting for the published results of ongoing trials in other countries.

“Hintayin na lang na matapos kasi advance na ang data gathering nila,” De la Peña said.

PAL warns passengers vs. traveling with fake COVID-19 test results

Robie de Guzman   •   April 12, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) has reminded passengers to secure authentic COVID-19 test results from legitimate medical providers, warning that using fraudulent ones may land them in jail.

PAL issued the reminder after it prevented the boarding of at least 15 individuals who presented fake COVID-19 test results at airport check-in counters.

In a statement, PAL said the passengers caught with falsified test results in Manila were bound for Cotabato, Dipolog, and Zamboanga.

They have been turned over to the Philippine National Police (PNP), the airline company said.

Most of the apprehended passengers were referred for an inquest at the city prosecutor’s office, while others have been isolated at quarantine facilities pending their real swab test results.

“The police said they will be charged with falsification of public documents and violation of RA 11332 or the Mandatory Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events of Public Health Concern Act,” the airline said.

“If found guilty, they may each face penalties of up to ₱50,000 or imprisonment for one to six months,” it added.

RT-PCR or antigen COVID-19 test results are required for travel to ensure that no virus transmission will occur in flights and in their destinations.

“Safe travel is always the paramount concern, and airlines and authorities are vigilant in not accepting travelers holding fake RT-PCR or Antigen test results, for everybody’s protection,” PAL said.

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