Palace: NCR may return to stricter quarantine if virus cases hit 85K by end-July
MANILA, Philippines — Metro Manila’s return to a more stringent lockdown measure is possible if the number of COVID-19 cases reaches 85,000 by July 31, Malacañang said Wednesday.
Responding to a question of whether the nation’s capital region will likely go back to a stiffer quarantine category if cases reach 85,000 by the end of this month, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque during an interview over CNN Philippines said:
“That’s a distinct possibility, although it’s a possibility that I wish would not happen because we all know that while we have to contain the disease, we also need to re-start our livelihoods ‘no.”
In a recently published study, experts from the University of the Philippines predict 85,000 infections and 2,000 deaths by the end of this month if the trend of new cases persists.
“We’ve come to a very crucial point where I think the economy can no longer afford to be shut down anew. But if we have to and there’s no alternative, we need to do it,” he added.
Roque also expressed confidence that Filipinos will cooperate in taking care of their health to preserve their livelihoods and keep Metro Manila in its current quarantine status.
“And I think the message has been well received by the Filipinos that we need to really take care of our health so we can proceed and pursue a livelihood anew ‘no,” Roque said.
“So, yes, a reversion to MECQ [modified enhanced community quarantine] or a more stringent quarantine is possible. I hope it will not happen though,” he went on.
Most areas in the country, including Metro Manila, are either under general community quarantine or modified general community quarantine.
Cebu City is the lone area in the country that is placed under MECQ.
As of Tuesday, the number of COVID-19 cases in the country reached 70,764 with 1,837 deaths and 23,281 recoveries.
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