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House-to-house search for COVID-19 patients is OK as long as ‘it is within bounds’ — Sotto

/ 11:56 AM July 15, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — As long as it is kept within due bounds, Senate President Vicente Sotto III said he sees no problem with the government’s recent policy tasking policemen and local government personnel to conduct a house-to-house search for mild and asymptomatic COVID-19 patients.

“It appears that they are dead serious in truncating the spread of the virus,” Sotto said in a message to reporters on Wednesday when sought for a comment on the matter.

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“As long as it is within due bounds then I don’t see a problem,” he added.

Interior Secretary Eduardo Año earlier said that the government will be visiting households to search for COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms so that they can be transferred to monitoring facilities and prevent the further spread of the virus.

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This is in line with the government’s “Oplan Kalinga” program, which seeks to transfer COVID-19 patients whose homes are ill-equipped for home quarantine to temporary isolation facilities.

Año noted that individuals who contract the respiratory disease will no longer be allowed to quarantine themselves at home if their homes do not have the necessary isolation facilities.

However, some senators raised concerns that this initiative could be open to abuses and “sow fear” among the public.

Meanwhile, Malacañang clarified that there will be no “house-to-house” search for coronavirus patients.

Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said COVID-19 patients who will be fetched from their houses must be either reported by their own families, members of the community, or the local government units themselves.

To date, Philippine health officials have so far confirmed 57,545 COVID-19 cases in the country, including 1,603 deaths and 20,459 recoveries.

/MUF
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TAGS: coronavirus pandemic, coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19, COVID-19 patients, house-to-house search, Nation, news, Senate President Tito Sotto
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