Aggressive testing, localized lockdown essential for new normal, says Taguig LGU
MANILA, Philippines — Aggressive testing and specific lockdowns would be key in transitioning to new normal systems amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Taguig City’s local government unit claimed on Thursday.
This was also the reasoning given by Taguig City Mayor Lino Cayetano on Thursday about the drastic increase in Taguig’s COVID-19 count, as aggressive testing and contact tracing have paved the way for them to identify cases that could have been ignored.
“The recent spike in the number of COVID-19 cases is attributed to the aggressive testing and contact tracing done in areas that were placed on a localized lockdown,” Cayetano said in a statement.
“More cases are expected as the city government continues to aggressively test. The target is for 10 percent of the city population to be tested before the year ends,” he added.
According to Cayetano, the city has one of the highest testing capabilities in the National Capital Region — and coupled with localized lockdowns, he believes a health crisis of great magnitudes could be averted.
On Wednesday, Taguig announced that 308 of 691 construction workers in Fort Bonifacio and 111 of thousands of Lower Bicutan residents have been found infected with the latest coronavirus strain, thanks to aggressive testing.
“Cases will continue to go up but localized lockdown is key to transition to a new normal. We don’t want to quarantine at the city or barangay level,” Cayetano said.
“As much as possible, we want to further localize lockdowns so we can be more specific about the areas we will investigate if there is unidentified mass transmission on the street or cluster of homes or buildings,” he added.
Currently, Taguig has 31 testing centers, two drive-thru COVID-19 testing sites, and 36 contact tracing teams. It also has five quarantine facilities, plus plans to open a 500-bed mega-quarantine facility in the Lakeshore area of Barangay Lower Bicutan.
As of Thursday, the city has 1,450 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 23 of which have died while 215 have already recovered. Nationwide, there are now 51,754 confirmed infections, with 1,314 patients dead and 12,813 recovered. With reports from Jim Mendoza, trainee
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