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Stricter protocols for businesses due once lockdown measure are lifted

By: - Reporter / @KAguilarINQ
/ 09:48 AM August 07, 2020

Workers at a medicine factory in the Philippines (AFP FILE PHOTO)

MANILA, Philippines — A new set of protocols for workplaces will be imposed by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) once stricter lockdown measures are lifted in economic hubs to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Workplaces in economic hubs are among the most critical areas for COVID-19 transmission, chief implementer of the government’s -pandemic response Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. said Thursday as he pointed to the operation of canteens and smoking areas as “source of contamination.”  

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“What we’re trying to do is we are issuing a new set of protocols for business establishments to make it stricter,” DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said in an interview on ANC.

“This time, we are adding certain things like making sure that there are company trainings, there will be a safety and health protocol officer as well as occupational safety and health committees in all the companies,” he added.

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Metro Manila, Bulacan, Laguna, Rizal and Cavite are under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) until August 18.

Under this lockdown measure, public transportation is suspended and most industries are only allowed to operate at limited capacity.

Lopez said they are also encouraging businesses “to provide the isolation rooms especially for affected workers” and make sure they are reporting all cases, including the disclosure of the employees’ health conditions.

“And we’re also not requiring and not recommending conducting the test to the asymptomatic. But definitely, we will have to have that SOP [standard operating procedure] na if symptomatic, you have to conduct the PCR [polymerase chain reaction] test,” Lopez reminded.

The Philippines has so far recorded 119,460 COVID-19 cases, the highest number in Southeast Asia. It also tallied 2,150 deaths and 66,837 recoveries nationwide.

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For more information on COVID-19, call the DOH Hotline: (02) 86517800 local 1149/1150.

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TAGS: businesses, coronavirus Philippines, COVID-19, Department of Trade and Industry, DTI, minimum health standards, protocols, Ramon Lopez
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