Palace: Gov’t response vs COVID-19 ‘correct’ as long as deaths remain low
MANILA, Philippines — Malacañang insisted on Monday that the government is doing the right thing in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic, noting the low number of deaths being recorded.
“Alam niyo po, habang mababa po ang mga namamatay, tama po ang ginagawa natin,” presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said in an online briefing, when asked whether the country is winning or losing in its fight against COVID-19.
(You know what, as long as the number of deaths is low, what we are doing is right.)
Of the 103,185 COVID-19 cases logged in the entire country, deaths recorded are at 2,059 while recoveries are at 65,557.
Citing experts, Roque said the shift to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) of Metro Manila, Laguna, Bulacan, Rizal and Cavite is a step towards the “right direction” since it will slow down the reproduction rate of transmission.
“At tingin ko po, papunta tayo sa tamang direksyon na tayo ay nag-MECQ,” Roque said.
(And from what I see, we are going the right direction now that we shifted to MECQ.)
“Dahil ang MECQ, gaya nga po ng sinasabi ng ating mga modelers, mathematical modelers, ito po ay garantiyadong pamamaraan para mapababa po natin yung R-naught na tinatawag, yung reproduction rate ng sakit at saka mapahaba po yung case doubling rate,” he explained.
(Because under MECQ, just like what mathematical modelers said, is a guaranteed method to decrease the R-naught or reproduction rate of the disease and slow down the case doubling rate.)
When asked if shifting to MECQ is an admission of the government’s failure, Roque answered in the negative, adding that reverting to stricter lockdown was to listen to the medical frontliners’ call.
“Hindi po. In fact, kung titignan ninyo ang datos, yung case doubling rate natin ay almost nine days at hindi po yan nagqqualify for MECQ,” Roque said.
(No. In fact, if you will look at the data, our case doubling rate is nearly nine days and that does not qualify for MECQ.)
“Pero syempre po, nagsalita po ang frontliners, ang sabi nga po ng Presidente, ang gyera na ito ay laban sa sakit, sino mapapadala nya sa gyera kundi ang mga frontliners, kung kinakailangan pakinggan at pagbigyan ang mga frontliners,” he went on.
(But of course, the frontliners already spoke. And the President said that this is a war against the diseases. Who will he send to the war if not the frontliners whom we should listen to?)
President Rodrigo Duterte heeded the plea of medical frontliners to reimpose stricter lockdown measures in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Laguna, Cavite and Rizal from August 4 to 18.
Medical frontliners earlier called for a “time out” as cases of COVID-19 continue to increase.
They said the “time out” will be used to refine the pandemic response in terms of “hospital workforce efficiency, failure of case finding and isolation, failure of contact tracing and quarantine,” and more.
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