Community quarantine programs effective in containing Covid-19 — DILG

The implementation of the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) has been effective in limiting the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año said on Sunday, April 5, 2020.

He said had the lockdown not been imposed when there were only 49 cases reported, the number could have possibly ballooned to 20,000.

“Ngayon, nasa 3,094 tayo. That is because dumami rin yung testing kit at nagkaroon na tayo ng maramihang testing like for example ngayon ay nakaka-average na ng 1,200 a day yung ating RITM at ang target natin ay pumalo tayo ng hanggang 8,000 to 10,000 tests a day. So yan yung target natin (We now have 3,094 cases. That is because we now have a lot of testing kits and we are able to test many people, like for example, we do an average of 1,200 a day at the RITM and our target is to do 8,000 to 10,000 tests a day. That is our target) with nine testing centers all over the country. May ma-accredit pang eight (Eight more testing centers will be accredited) next week so we are really on the right track,” Año said in a radio interview.

Asked if the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has recommended a possible lifting or extension of the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine to President Rodrigo Duterte, he said there is a presentation from doctors, professionals belonging to the technical working group made up of representatives from the health, economic and security sectors.

The representatives will give their assessment and recommendation to IATF principals, and from that, the recommendation would be given to the President before April 14, Año said.

He said the gains during the quarantine must be sustained to prevent a spike in Covid-19 cases, and for this reason, the IATF-EID needs to be “very careful” in making a recommendation to the Chief Executive. (Christopher Lloyd Caliwan, PNA)