DOH reminds public to be careful during ‘Undas’ | Inquirer News
Mask use still advisable

DOH reminds public to be careful during ‘Undas’

By: - Reporter / @santostinaINQ
/ 04:45 AM October 31, 2022

A cemetery in Pasay City. STORY: DOH reminds public to be careful during ‘Undas’

Remembering the departed loved ones with extra caution due to pandemic. (File photo by MARIANNE BERMUDEZ / Philippine Daily Inquirer)

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) on Sunday urged Filipinos visiting their departed loved ones in cemeteries or columbariums to assess the risks of a place in deciding whether or not to use face masks.

“Filipinos are expected to flock to cemeteries this coming (All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days). Although the restrictions on wearing face masks have been eased, there is nothing wrong if we continue to be careful,” the DOH said in an advisory.


The DOH has provided a “checklist” in order to help people assess the risk of such places, which are expected to get crowded.


The health department said the public should consider if people in the cemeteries and columbariums are fully vaccinated; if it is crowded; if it’s possible to keep a distance of at least one meter from others; if it’s an open-air area or if it has good ventilation; and if people can practice hand sanitation.

On the other hand, in assessing personal risks, one should consider the frequency of interactions with other people; how often would they go to crowded areas; and if they are in close contact with vulnerable individuals like senior citizens, pregnant women, and those with comorbidities.

“If you have anything on the checklist, it will be better for you to wear face masks,” the DOH said.

It is the first time since the pandemic started that Filipinos will be able to commemorate “Undas,” a traditional celebration of departed loved ones.

This comes on the heels of the government’s decision to ease face mask requirements and allow people to wear or not wear masks in indoor and outdoor settings.

Executive Order No. 7, which allows the optional face mask use and reiterates the continued implementation of public health emergency amid the COVID-19 pandemic, was signed by President Marcos and released on Friday.


Among other things, the DOH also advised those who have COVID-19 symptoms or other illnesses, as well as senior citizens, children, and pregnant women, to just stay home and avoid the crowds at the cemeteries.


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TAGS: mask-wearing, Undas 2022

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