Amid looming Omicron threat, Palace encourages use of face shields anew
MANILA, Philippines — Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles on Monday urged Filipinos to wear a face shield to prevent COVID-19 infection amid the threat of the Omicron variant.
“Of course, it is an added layer of protection. So, while it is voluntary, syempre, ako personally, I would like to encourage ang ating mga kababayan, kung kaya naman po magsuot ng face shield, ay magsuot tayo ng face shield para dagdag proteksyon na lamang po,” he said during the Palace press briefing.
(So, while it is voluntary, I, personally would like to encourage our fellow Filipinos that if they can wear a face shield, wear one for an additional protection.)
However, Nograles, also the acting presidential and Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) on Emerging Infectious Diseases spokesperson, stressed that current government policy states wearing of face shields is voluntary.
“Well, as it stands, ganu’n pa rin po ‘yung latest resolution ng IATF tungkol sa face shields,” he noted.
(Well, as it stands, the latest resolution of the IATF regarding face shields is still in effect.)
Based on IATF Resolution No. 148-D, face shield use is voluntary in areas under Alert Level 3 and below.
However, it remains mandatory for individuals in healthcare settings.
On Sunday, National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez Jr. shared that the government is looking into the possibility of mandating the use of face shields anew due to fears of the Omicron variant.
Galvez cited that the World Health Organization believed that face shields were the reason behind the “good” result in the country’s COVID-19 situation amid the Delta variant case surge.
The B.1.1.529, a variant of concern and given a Greek name Omicron, was recently discovered in South Africa.
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