MANILA – Malacañang thumbed down on Thursday the proposal of the OCTA Research Group to impose a three-week hard lockdown in areas considered as a “hotspot” for the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).
In an online press briefing, Roque said the proposed implementation of hard lockdowns is “not doable” because the government is aiming for “total health” amid the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic.
Roque said the government is concentrating on addressing worsening hunger caused by the temporary closure of the country’s economy due to the pandemic.
“Sa ngayon po, parang hindi po doable iyan dahil nakikita naman po natin na ayaw nating makitang lalo pang dumami ang hanay ng mga nagugutom (As of now, it does not look doable because we can see that we do not want more Filipinos to suffer from hunger). We are aiming for total health. Bawasan ang pagkalat ng kaso at bawasan ang hanay ng mga nagugutom (Let’s stop the transmission of cases, and at the same time, address hunger),” he said.
On Tuesday, the OCTA Research Group recommended the imposition of a three-week hard lockdown in Covid-19 hotspots nationwide to avoid the further spike in coronavirus infections.
Roque said the government is ready to attend to the needs of Covid-19 patients despite the surge in cases.
“Ang ating objective doon sa less than 2 percent na kinakailangang ma-ospital, pinaghahandaan po natin. Dapat meron nga silang mapupuntahang ospital (Our objective is less than 2 percent in need of hospitalization. They should be able to find hospitals),” he said.
He added that while the hospitals’ utilization of intensive care unit (ICU) beds is already at a “critical level,” they can still accommodate Covid-19 patients.
“At sa ngayon naman po, bagama’t nasa critical level ang ating ICU beds ay hindi pa naman sila completely puno (As of now, even though our ICU beds are at critical levels, they are still not filled to capacity),” Roque said.
On Monday, President Rodrigo Duterte floated that there might be a possible policy shift by implementing “localized lockdowns” nationwide instead of city-wide and province-wide community quarantine to ramp up the country’s fight against Covid-19 and its variants. (PNA)