‘No indications’ of lockdowns after elections amid mass gatherings — DOH
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday said there are “no indications” that there could be widespread lockdowns after the elections amid mass gatherings and huge rallies that took place during the campaign period.
“No indications as of now,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III told INQUIRER.net in a text message when asked if there is a chance that the government would enforce lockdowns should there be a surge of COVID-19 cases due to the mass gatherings.
“Besides there will be no more widespread lockdowns as current policy is when cases are very high in a given community, only limited granular/lockdowns may be employed by the LGU (local government unit),” Duque added.
This, despite the warning given by independent pandemic monitor OCTA Research that about 5,000 to 10,000 daily COVID-19 cases may be recorded once new Omicron subvariants enter the country.
An Omicron subvariant, B.2.12. was detected in a 52-year old woman from Finland who entered the country and then went to Baguio City.
Duque, however, noted that the said variant has not been designated as a variant of interest nor a variant of concern by the Center for Disease Control of the United States.
“No evidence that it can cause severe COVID and vaccines are still effective against severe critical COVID and therefore prevent hospitalizations,” the Health chief added.
So far, Duque also said that there is no “significant increase of cases in the country as a whole.”
The OCTA Research added that the new Omicron subvariants are unlikely to pose a “major outbreak” once these enter the country.
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