Lower alert level no reason to be complacent: DOH exec - TrueID

Lower alert level no reason to be complacent: DOH exec

Philippine News AgencyOctober 18, 2021

AFFORDABLE SHIRTS. An ambulant vendor shows a factory overrun shirt from Bangladesh which she sells for PHP120 in Bagong Silang-Kanan, Caloocan City on Monday (Oct. 18, 2021). More businesses are slowly reopening after Metro Manila’s Covid-19 status was downgraded from Alert Level 4 to 3. (PNA photo by Ben Briones)

MANILA – A health official on Monday reminded of the need to proactively promote minimum public health standards despite the lowering of the alert level status in the National Capital Region (NCR) and community quarantine classification in other areas.

Dr. Edsel Salvana, a member of the Department of Health (DOH) - Technical Advisory Group, warned about complacency to prevent potential super spreader events.

"Kasi bagama’t ibinaba natin from Alert Level 4, nasa Alert Level 3 pa rin tayo. Ibig sabihin, wala pa tayo doon sa level na puwede po talaga nating sabihin na hindi tataas iyan (While the Alert Level 4 was downgraded, we are still in Alert Level 3. That means, we are not yet in the level that we can really say the cases will not spike)," Salvana said in an interview during the Laging Handa press briefing.

"Hindi pa po tayo dapat masyado relaxed at this time and iwasan po natin iyong mga (We should not be relaxed at this time and should avoid) activities that can potentially turn into super-spreader events," he added.

He said adhering to the principles of the 3Cs (Closed, Crowded, and Close Contact) Strategy should remain, even if the alert level status goes down further.

For instance, Salvana said only vaccinated ones are allowed to enter cinemas, with eating and drinking prohibited.

"So, we are trying to balance po itong ating mga (these) activities, while seeing if it remains safe," he said.

Salvana said it is important to make sure that only those vaccinated individuals are allowed to conduct 3Cs activities.

He noted there is a higher chance to spread the virus every time the government eases the community restrictions and while the mobility is increasing.

However, it could be prevented if protocols are strictly enforced.

"At dahil mataas na rin iyong antas ng pagbabakuna, mas mababa ang tiyansa na magkaroon ng severe disease kung mahawa man ang isang tao at kinakailangan po talaga nating dahan-dahan (And because the vaccination rate is increasing, the lower the chances to have severe cases once a carrier infects others and we really have to do it slowly)," he added.

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