Gov’t in control of COVID-19 crisis, DILG chief assures
MANILA, Philippines — The government is still “in control” of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis even as the number of cases approached the 130,000 mark, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año assured Monday.
“We are still in control. We placed NCR [National Capital Region] and four provinces under MECQ because we know that our hospitals are overwhelmed so we have to restrict the movement of the people but eventually, we hope the numbers will improve,” Año said in an interview on ANC.
Metro Manila and the provinces of Rizal, Laguna, Bulacan and Cavite were earlier placed under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) until August 18 to suppress the number of COVID-19 infections in the country and let medical frontliners recuperate from the pandemic.
Under MECQ, public transportation was suspended anew and several businesses were closed to prevent or minimize the risk of transmission.
“We always see the effect of an MECQ within the incubation of 14 days, it’s not like magic that when we declare MECQ then everything will be okay. We have to do a lot of effort. The LGUs, the national government, private sectors are actually doing everything with cooperation and coordination,” he added.
Earlier, treatment czar and Health Undersecretary Leopoldo Vega said the two-week MECQ will be used for hiring thousands of healthcare workers to address the pandemic.
The Department of Health also said the MECQ period will be used to tap health workers from other regions and serve as a “substitution team” for those working in Metro Manila.
The Philippines now has the most number of COVID-19 cases in Southeast Asia with 129,913, including 2,270 deaths and 67,673 recoveries.
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