COVID-19 Crisis: Cebu City Government sets voluntary face mask policy on trial period until December 2022

In recent times here in the Philippines, Cebu City has been getting a lot of attention with regards to the COVID-19 crisis we are all living with. This was because the City Government decided to loosen the face mask mandate within the city’s jurisdiction and the Department of Health (DOH) claimed that they were “never consulted” about it. Just yesterday, GMA Network reported that the City Government of Cebu announced that the voluntary face mask policy will be set on a trial period until the end of 2022. In case a COVID-19 surge, the said policy will be lifted automatically. Already, the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) has its attention on Cebu City.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the GMA Network news report. Some parts in boldface…

The Cebu City government on Monday announced that its voluntary face mask policy will be on trial period until December 2022, and will be automatically lifted should there be a surge in COVID-19 infections in the city.

In reading the Executive Order (EO) No. 6, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama’s spokesperson Karla Henry-Ammann said that the trial period of the EO 5 which lifted the mandatory face mask use in the city, was set from September 1 to December 31, 2022.

The same period is hereby referred to as the trial and observation period,” she added.

Further, Ammann said the EO will be automatically lifted and the wearing of face masks in the city will be mandatory anew if there will be a surge of COVID-19 cases in Cebu City, as verified by the government.

Rama signed the EO on Monday during the city government’s flag ceremony.

Department of Health (DOH) officer-in-charge (OIC) Maria Rosario Vergeire on Wednesday said they were not consulted regarding the lifting of the mandatory face mask policy in Cebu City.

Vergeire stressed there will be a higher risk of infections in an area if the safeguards against COVID-19 are not in place.

The above article ended by stating that Press Secretary Trixie Cruz-Angeles said they respect the mandate of the local government units (LGUs) over their respective jurisdictions.

Meanwhile, the Manila Times published an article regarding Cebu City’s move on loosening the face mask policy and the need for health experts to update the face mask policy. Posted below is an excerpt. Some parts in boldface…

CEBU City’s attempt to relax the rules on the wearing of face masks draws attention to an attribute needed in policymaking. That is, the crafting and tweaking of policies should keep pace with how quickly situations change. We remain firm in the belief that science, or more specifically medical expertise, should take the lead in devising the policies concerning Covid-19. But people struggle to understand why they take so long to adjust to developments.

Perhaps officials in Cebu have grown impatient with the national government, more specifically the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases. Last week, Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama issued an executive order making the wearing of face masks in open spaces optional. But he later delayed the implementation of the order after talking to Secretary Benjamin “Benhur” Abalos Jr. of the Department of the Interior and Local Government. Abalos promised the mayor that he would bring up the need to review the health protocols with the task force.

Mr. Abalos sounded inclined to allow Mayor Rama’s executive order. The secretary said in a statement: “In fact, I am going to even further suggest to make Cebu City the pilot implementer of this measure since the city has always been first in espousing non-masking policies outdoors for the ease and benefit of its people amid the pandemic.”

The point in delaying the new order in Cebu seems to be about “harmonizing existing laws and policies” regarding the lingering pandemic. The problem is that the situation is not uniform across the country. Also, the Philippines has opened up its borders to tourists and foreign travelers, including those who come from countries where wearing face masks are no longer required. And doing so has not caused a spike in new or imported Covid-19 cases.

Indeed, a review of health protocols seems overdue. Earlier in June, Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn “Gwen” Garcia clashed with national health authorities when she issued an executive order that allowed people not to wear face masks in open areas, like beaches and mountain trails. Her decision seemed sensible then, and so does the similar order issued by Cebu City.

Perhaps, the national government should listen more to local officials. They should consider giving them more discretion in setting health guidelines for their respective areas of concern.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What is your reaction this latest series of developments? Do you think Cebu City’s approach on loosening the face mask policy within their jurisdiction makes sense? Do you believe that the national authorities – including the DOH itself – should listen more to the local government and provincial government leaders on how to deal with COVID-19 and implement health protocols? Do you think that the remaining restrictions are outdated and don’t make sense anymore? Do you think Cebu City’s move on loosening the face mask policy will succeed and inspire other LGUs – especially in Metro Manila – to follow suit? Do you think that the anti-vaccine fanatics and other anti-authoritarian activists will make moves to ruin the authorities’ moves on dealing with COVID-19?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City Government set to expand local vaccination sites starting with schools on August 15, 2022

With the national daily average of new COVID-19 cases now in the thousands, it is clear that the expansion of vaccination and booster operations is needed in each locality. That being said, the City Government of Muntinlupa will do exactly that by opening vaccination sites starting with local schools on August 15, 2022 and in other places subsequently, according to a Manila Bulletin report. Take note that President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. already urged people to get their booster shots. He also announced that no lockdown will be done.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

The Muntinlupa City government is set to launch Covid-19 vaccination sites in schools on Aug. 15 to increase coverage among senior citizens and the general population.

Muntinlupa City Health Officer Dr. Juancho Bunyi said this is in compliance with President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s directive to reach 90 percent coverage for primary series among senior citizens and 50 percent coverage for first booster shot among the general population until Oct. 8 this year.

Based on the recomputed targets, the CHO needs to vaccinate 1,357 senior citizens and 27,700 individuals among the general population to achieve the goal.

As of Aug. 5, a total of 533,944 individuals have been fully vaccinated, or 134.9 percent of the 70 percent target, while 172,672 and 22,458 individuals received their first and second booster shots, respectively.

Of the total, the fully vaccinated individuals were 39,824 among the A2 group (senior citizens), 436,008 for the 18 to 59 years old age group, 40,698 for the 12-17 years old, and 17,414 for the 5-11 years old.

For the first booster, 23,304 are senior citizens, 145,533 are from among the 18 to 59 years old, and 3,835 are from the 12-17 years old.

The settings-based vaccination will be implemented based on the following schedule: Week 1 – schools, Week 2 – homeowners associations, Week 3 – markets, Week 4 – terminals, Week 5 – offices, Week 6 – factories, Week 7 – plazas, and Week 8 – churches.

On Aug. 15, the CHO will launch the vaccination sites in schools. The pilot cluster sites are the Putatan Elementary School (PES), Tunasan High School Annex (TNHS), and Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa. Officials from the regional health office are expected to conduct a site visit in the schools.

There will be six schools and two health centers which will serve as cluster sites for vaccination: Alabang Elementary School, Cupang Elementary School, Cupang Health Center, Sucat Elementary and High School, PES, Muntinlupa Science High School, TNHS, Itaas Elementary School, Poblacion Elementary School, and Southville Health Center.

Each cluster site will accommodate students, their parents, and teaching and non-teaching personnel of schools.

The above article ended stating that new vaccination sites will be established on August 26 at the Poblacion Bucal tricycle station, and on September 26 at the Alabang Public Market.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this recent development? Are you satisfied to learn about the opening of new vaccination sites in schools within the city? Are you a parent who has a child enrolled at one of the mentioned schools with vaccination sites? Have members of the anti-vaccine fanatics contacted you lately? Do you think the anti-vaccine fanatics are conspiring with terrorist or anarchist groups to worsen the COVID-19 situation all over the Philippines?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: During SONA, President Marcos declares no more lockdown

During his first State of the Nation Address (SONA), President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr., stated that there would be no more lockdown in the Philippines in relation to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, according to a Manila Bulletin news report. Take note that new cases of COVID-19 have been rising nationwide but they have not reached the point of overwhelming the healthcare system.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

“We will no longer implement a lockdown.”

This was among the most resounding remarks President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. pronounced during his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday, July 25, that lasted for more than an hour.

The President said while there are new variants of the coronavirus being discovered at the present, the Philippines can no longer afford to go through another lockdown, so he pronounced that under his administration, there will no longer be lockdown.

“Sa ating sitwasyon ng pangkalusugan, nariyan pa rin ang banta ng Covid-19 lalo’t may mga nadidiskubreng bagong variant ng coronavirus, pero hindi na natin kakayanin ang isa pang lockdown (In our health situation, the threats of new Covid-19 variants are still here, but we can no longer afford another lockdown),” Marcos said.

“Wala na tayong gagawing lockdown (We will no longer implement a lockdown),” the President added, earning an applause from the legislature.

Marcos said health protocols will, however, be implemented depending on the current situation.

For added context, watch this Inquirer news video below.

In relation to President Marcos’ remark of no more lockdown, the Department of Health (DOH) it will act to strengthen the nation’s healthcare system. The DOH shall carry out the directives of the President on recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic while improving access to primary and specialty healthcare. Both the DOH and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) have been directed by Marcos to organize another rollout of booster shots for COVID-19.

Personally, I strongly agree that there should be no more lockdown even if there would be another surge of COVID-19 cases. As we have seen before, a single lockdown caused heavy damage on the economy (limited or shut businesses, loss of income, increased unemployment) and on people. I believe our nation has what it takes to live on with COVID-19, move forward and rise up stronger from the crisis. To achieve true forward momentum, there is still the need to organize wide-scale COVID-19 vaccination operations (note: the national government has to deal with stored vaccines nearing expiration), declare a lot more people eligible for the 2nd booster shot (note: DOH still needs to do any real work on this) and convince people strongly to follow health protocols. There is also the possibility of modifying the COVID-19 alert level system. What President Marcos declared in his speech is clearly related to the COVID-19 exit strategy.

In relation to all of these, I urge you and members of your local community to get vaccinated or boosted, and keep following health protocols to truly achieve improved resistance against COVID-19. Never let the anti-vaccine fanatics fool you, even though they become violent and/or more aggressive towards you and your local community with their lying and fearmongering.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What do you think about President Marcos’ no more lockdown remark? Do you believe that the Philippines can move forward with COVID-19? Has anyone from the anti-vaccine extremists been hounding you, or even harassing you? Are many members of your local community eager to get their 2nd booster shots?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: More boosted patients – including the comorbid aged 18 to 49 – declared eligible for 2nd booster shot

Finally, the Department of Health (DOH) declared that more patients, specifically comorbid patients aged 18 to 49 years old as well as all patients aged 50-above, are eligible to avail of the 2nd booster shot for COVID-19, according to a Philippine News Agency (PNA) article. Take note that almost 16 million people here in the Philippines received their 1st booster shots while the 2nd booster shot was issued to a very specific, few types of patients. As such, only a small number of the boosted patients managed to get a 2nd booster shot.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the PNA. Some parts in boldface…

All adults aged 50 years old and above and individuals aged 18 years to 49 years with comorbidities can now receive a second booster or fourth dose of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) vaccine.

This was after the Department of Health (DOH), through the National Covid-19 Vaccination Operations Center, issued the guidelines for its nationwide rollout.

In a statement Tuesday night, the DOH said the rollout follows the expansion of the emergency use authorization issued by the Food and Drug Administration, which allows certain Covid-19 vaccine brands to be used as second booster doses in the expanded population groups.

It also follows the recommendations provided by the Health Technology Assessment Council.

Pfizer (Tozinameran) and Moderna (Spikevax) are the only mRNA vaccine brands that could be used as a second booster shot, which must be administered at least four months after the first booster or the third dose was given.

Eligible individuals may receive their second booster shot from their local government units (LGUs) or vaccination sites nearest to them.

They are advised to bring their vaccination card and a valid ID.

A medical certificate is not required, even for individuals with comorbidities.

However, medical screeners or doctors at the vaccination sites are authorized to assess and determine whether an individual could or could not receive the second booster shot.

On Tuesday, the DOH launched the PinasLakas booster campaign across the country.

Vaccination activities will be conducted in schools, malls, plazas, and places of worship under the campaign, making Covid-19 vaccines and booster shots more accessible to the people.

As for the house-to-house vaccination, concerned individuals are encouraged to get in touch with their LGUs for guidelines and schedules.

“As vaccine immunity wanes over time, we are dedicated to helping our people remain protected against Covid-19. We are making it easier for as many of our people to avail of the primary series and boosters, including second boosters,” DOH Officer in Charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said.

Vaccination, paired with adherence to the minimum public health standards remains the “best defense” amid the pandemic, she added.

The above report ended stating that more than 71 million patients have been fully vaccinated (2 doses of most COVID-19 vaccines) as of July 25, 2022, and less than 16 million patients got their booster shots as of July 17, 2022. Recently it was reported that the number of patients who received the 2nd booster shot totaled 1.1 million.

This is so far the best news about the nation’s COVID-19 matters released so far. There are so many millions of fully vaccinated patients counted and only a minority of them got the 1st booster shot, while an even smaller minority of the boosted patients got the 2nd booster shot. Take note that there are some patients who received their first booster shot more than six months ago and have been waiting for the green light to get their 2nd booster shot. It took the DOH and other national authorities long but they finally made the moves to accommodate more patients. Clearly, making 2nd booster shots more available to the boosted patients of the Philippines is the right move.

No matter what the anti-vaccine fanatics out there say, COVID-19 is still the main problem, not vaccines and not vaccination. Clearly the anti-vaccine fanatics don’t have any solutions to the COVID-19 crisis. The anti-vaccine fanatics themselves are the additional problems for the entire nation which so happens to be connected to the Internet.

Let me end this by asking you readers: Are you a boosted patient who has been eagerly waiting for clearance to get the 2nd booster shot? If you are, how long has it been since you got the first booster shot and how long have you been waiting? Which brand of vaccine do you want for your 2nd booster shot, Pfizer or Moderna? Do you believe that the anti-vaccine fanatics of the Philippines have been hounding vaccinated patients to make vaccination efforts nationwide fail miserably?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.

COVID-19 Crisis: Department of Health (DOH) pushing to redefine fully vaccinated status

For some time now, the terms fully vaccinated has officially been used by the national authorities to describe a patient who received two doses of most COVID-19 vaccine brands (note: Janssen vaccine from Johnson & Johnson is a single dose vaccine). That may soon change as the Department of Health (DOH) is pushing to redefine what fully vaccinated means in relation to the recent COVID-19 developments here in the Philippines, according to a Manila Bulletin news report.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

The Department of Health (DOH) said it will push for the redefinition of “fully vaccinated” against Covid-19— which is to include a booster dose.

“Katulad ng nasabi namin noon, we’ll be really supporting, we have recommended the redefinition of our fully vaccinated–kung saan ang first two doses plus yung booster shot (As we have said before, we’ll be really supporting, we have recommended the redefinition of our fully vaccinated – first two doses plus a booster shot),” said DOH Officer-in-Charge Maria Rosario Vergeire in a press briefing on Wednesday, July 20.

Such a move can be used as “incentives and disincentives to people,” said Vergeire.

“So, people cannot go to these public spaces or cannot enter restaurants and they just eat outside if they don’t have that fully vaccinated status. ‘Yun sana yung gusto natin ipatupad pero siyempre marami dapat tayong ikonsidera kapag ginawa natin ito (That’s what we want to implement but of course, we have a lot to consider before we can do this)” she said.

“Kaya patuloy pakikipagusap sa iba’t-ibang ahensya pati na rin sa (We continue to discuss this with various agencies as well as the) Office of the President if this is going to be feasible or not. So, hahantayin po natin na mabuo ang ating pakikipag-usap para hindi natin maiwan ang ibang sektor sa usapin na ito (So, we will wait for all discussions to be completed so that we do not leave other sectors behind in this matter),” she added.

Vergeire said they will propose this strategy once the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) is reconstituted.

“Primarily that’s what we are thinking about. Hopefully in the coming days, pag convene ng IATF, mailagay na natin sa ating agenda, mapag-usapan, mapagkasunduan, at mairekomenda na uli sa ating Presidente (when the IATF convenes, we will be able to put this on our agenda, discussed, come up with a decision, and make the recommendations to the President),” she said.

Second booster – In a related development, the DOH is not yet recommending the second booster shot for the general population.

“Hanggang sa ngayon, sinasabi ng mga eksperto (Until now, experts say)—especially for the general population—your first two doses and your first booster shot are still enough to protect you from severe and critical illness from this Covid-19 virus,” said Vergeire.

It is different for the immunocompromised, seniors, and healthcare workers. Kasi sila, hindi ganun ka robust ang kanilang immunity sa katawan… kaya binibigyan pa sila ng another dose (Because their immunity in the body is not that robust… so they are given another dose). That is based on evidence. Itong second booster for general population, hanggang sa ngayon, sparse pa rin ang datos para makapagbigay ng ebidensya that we can give this to our general population (This second booster for the general population, until now, the data is still sparse in order to provide evidence that we can give this to our general population),” she added.

As of this writing, the current definition of fully vaccinated still remains in effect. It will take the approval of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. to make the revision happen at all.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What do you think about this new development? What do you think about the DOH’s push to have fully vaccinated redefined? Do you think this will lead to confusion among all the people who got vaccinated with two doses nationwide?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Philippines pandemic exit strategy coming

It has been over two years since the entire Philippines first got setback economically and socially by the COVID-19 crisis. Until now, people, private organizations and businesses are still struggling to fully recover from the varied effects that come with government-imposed restrictions, limitations on business-related activities, and the public’s complacency towards COVID-19. It is bad enough that the Philippines now has a core of anti-vaccine fanatics who are misinforming and scaring people while offering no real solutions to the problems.

Speaking of solutions, a pandemic exit strategy is brewing high up in the government and it should be sent to President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr., soon, according to a recent report by the Manila Bulletin.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

A Cabinet member has committed that the proposed pandemic exit strategy crafted by a panel of medical experts will be endorsed to President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.

Former presidential adviser and Go Negosyo founder Joey Concepcion said that Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Benhur Abalos will endorse the proposal which the government can adopt to help the country transition from pandemic to normalcy.

In a statement, Concepcion said “Abalos said he will endorse the presentation of the proposals to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.”

Abalos also said that he “will organize a meeting with the Department of Health (DOH) to initiate more vaccinations at the community level.”

Abalos also agreed on the importance of raising booster vaccination rates to 70 percent of the eligible population which is included in the pandemic exit proposal.

“Kailangan ng isa pa. Isa pa para sa mga pamilya, isa pa para sa komunidad (We need one more One more for our families, one more for our community),” Abalos said.

With this, Concepcion also renewed his call to push for one more massive effort for vaccination.

Complacency is really the problem. There is no sense of urgency because people don’t see what might happen if our wall of immunity starts to weaken,” he said.

Concepcion explained that re-infections are quite possible, and that cases of long Covid have grave consequences on productivity, and ultimately, the economy.

He echoed Abalos’ statement that “we need to convince people that they need boosters.”

The DILG Chief recently met with Concepcion and members of the Advisory Council of Experts (ACE), a group of medical doctors, scientists and academics comprising the country’s foremost authorities on public health, molecular biology, disaster resilience, data insight and analysis, and economics.

The group’s proposal outlined parameters to ease the country into normalcy and encourage economic activity without risking the public’s health. It has been met with approval from the private sector, including several industry groups and businessmen.

Abalos further expressed optimism as the proposal was an initiative of the private sector, and that it puts emphasis on the importance of achieving high booster vaccination rates.

As you can see in the above news excerpt, national government officials, private sector members and other stakeholders have been brainstorming and discussing ways with the exit strategy in mind to truly lift the nation further from the COVID-19 crisis. Former presidential adviser Joey Concepcion is absolutely right when he pointed to complacency which is an enduring problem on the part of the public when it comes to how they perceived COVID-19, vaccination and health. I am certain that a lot of people got fooled by the anti-vaccine fanatics who keep on spreading misinformation and fear.

On the aspect of vaccination, I do agree that a major renewal of COVID-19 vaccination and booster shot rollouts should happen soon. I’m talking about reopening the closed vaccination sites, deploying a lot of health workers with lots of supplies of vaccines prepared, and making sure that each vaccination hub is well organized (note: we don’t want a repeat of the very embarrassing Parañaque Pfizer vaccine launch of May 2021). In addition, the national authorities should come up with ways to make economic recovery more achievable for businesses and employees. On the topic of new infections caused by Omicron and its subvariants, our nation should serious consider acquiring more Sputnik vaccines as those have proven to be very effective against Omicron. Whatever the details they are discussing, the pandemic exit strategy for the Philippines something that everyone should watch out for.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: What do you think about this new development? Do you think that the national authorities and other stakeholders will be able come up with a pandemic exit strategy that will work? Do you think that the anti-vaccine fanatics will ramp up their misinformation campaign and fearmongering now that they know a national pandemic exit strategy is being developed? Do you think President Marcos will spend sufficient time to review the pandemic exit strategy before issuing his response?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others as well as making a donation to support my publishing.. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: President Marcos says the wearing of face masks would become optional if booster shot campaign succeeds

If you are sick or tired of wearing face masks after enduring more than two years of this COVID-19 crisis we are still living with, you are not alone. Recently, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos, Jr. stated that the wearing of face masks would become optional if the booster shot campaign succeeds, the Manila Bulletin reported.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Manila Bulletin. Some parts in boldface…

Wearing of face masks would become optional if the government’s booster shot drive against Covid-19 succeeds, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. said.

Marcos, however, said that easing of restrictions to that extent would be a long shot as his administration attempts to duplicate the national vaccination rollout done last year.

“[L]et us return to the idea of what we did last year na magkaroon ulit ng (to have another) vaccine rollout. Gawin na natin ito para makatiyak na tayo (Let’s do this now so we can be assured),” the President said in his virtual speech during his supposed face-to-face meeting with local government units officials in Malacañang on Friday night, July 8.

At pagka maging matagumpay ang ating booster rollout ay makikita naman natin siguro puwede na nating ibaba ang mga alert level, puwede na nating gawing optional ang mask (And if the booster rollout succeeds, perhaps we can lower the alert level and make wearing of mask optional),” Marcos added.

The Chief Executive stressed that making the wearing of masks optional will not be enforced until it’s crystal clear that it will be safe to do so in order to prevent the return of surging cases in the country.

“Pero hindi po natin gagawin ‘yan hanggang maliwanag na maliwanag na safe na talaga. Dahil although so far maganda naman ang takbo, hindi naman napupuno ang mga ospital. Ngunit kung hindi tayo maingat, mapupunta na naman tayo doon (But we will not do that yet until it is very clear that it’s already safe. Because although, so far, hospitals are not overwhelmed, if we don’t remain cautious, we will again go back there),” Marcos said.

The government is planning to implement a booster rollout for children in an attempt to fully open schools for face-to-face classes before the year ends.

Making the wearing of face masks optional is a new challenge not just for the national government but also for the provincial government units and local government units that are doing their respective parts in the fight against COVID-19. In recent times, it was reported that more than 70 million people nationwide got fully vaccinated (2 doses of most COVID-19 vaccines) while more than 15 million got their first booster shot.

I personally support the idea of intensifying the booster shot campaign as only a minority of the fully vaccinated patients got boosted. That being said, it would also be good for the country if only the Department of Health (DOH) would officially declare more boosted patients (including the comorbid patients among them) eligible to get their 2nd booster shots, especially if more than six months had passed since the first booster shot was administered to them. Clearly, more COVID-19 vaccination sites need to be set up on the local level to ensure better immunization. In fact, the vaccination sites that got closed down need to be reopened. As for the national government, they need to release COVID-19 vaccines that are nearing expiration. Let me add that the national daily count of new COVID-19 cases exceeded 2,000.

Let me end this by asking you readers: Do you desire that the national government and other government units nationwide would declare the wearing of face masks optional? What do you think the DOH should do next in order to allow more patients to get their first or second booster shots? Are the anti-vaccine fanatics out there still bothering you or even harassing you? Do you realize that the anti-vaccine fanatics offer no real solutions to the COVID-19 problems of our nation?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/

COVID-19 Crisis: Online registration process for the first booster shot for immunocompromised minors (aged 12-17) of Las Piñas City is ongoing

In relation to the increased number of COVID-19 cases happening all around Metro Manila, the City Government of Las Piñas recently launched the online registration for the first COVID-19 booster shot (or the 3rd shot following two doses of most COVID-19 vaccines) specifically for local minors aged 12 to 17-years-old, as reported in the Manila Bulletin. The registration is still ongoing.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin news report. Some parts in boldface…

The Las Piñas city government announced that the registration of minors aged 12 to 17 years old under the immunocompromised category is now open to receive their first booster shot.

Mayor Imelda Aguilar told parents or guardians of immunocompromised minors to register at https://laspinascityonline.laspinascity.gov.ph/immunocompromised for their schedule of vaccination of first booster shot.

Aguilar urges residents to answer the question properly including the sickness of the child placed under the immunocompromised category.

She said the vaccination of (first) booster shot for immunocompromised children will be conducted in hospitals.

The mayor encouraged all the parents and guardians to register their children, aged 12-17 years old, for them to get additional protection against the Covid-19 disease.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Las Piñas City resident, what is your reaction to this recent development? If you are a parent with a child aged 12 to 17-years-old who has been vaccinated with two shots already, are you planning to help your child avail of the first booster shot?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City’s 2nd booster shot recipients exceed 8,000

As part of the national effort to have people immunized for COVID-19 by means of non-stop vaccination and booster shots, the progressive City of Muntinlupa saw its 2nd booster shot recipients surpass the mark of 8,000, according to a Manila Bulletin news report which also had an update about the city’s active cases.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin report. Some parts in boldface…

Muntinlupa recorded 11 total active Covid-19 cases while its total recipients of second booster shots rose to more than 8,000 amid the detection of Omicron subvariant cases in the country.

Data from the City Health Office showed that as of June 8, seven new Covid-19 were tallied, coming from Barangays Ayala Alabang, Putatan, and Cupang, compared to one new case on June 7.

Of the 11 active cases, six are listed in Ayala Alabang, two each in Putatan and Cupang, and one in Poblacion. Barangays that are Covid-19 free are Tunasan, Bayanan, Alabang, Buli, and Sucat.

Since 2020, Muntinlupa has recorded 40,076 confirmed cases, 39,449 recoveries and 616 deaths.

Last June 7, the Department of Health announced the detection of three new BA.5 Omicron subvariant cases and seven new BA.2.12.1 subvariant cases in the country.

Meanwhile, the Muntinlupa City government continued its vaccination program including the administration of second booster shots.

To date, a total of 8,052 individuals composed of immunocompromised, frontline health workers, and senior citizens have received their second booster shot.

Of the total, 1,514 came from Barangay Putatan followed by 907 from Ayala Alabang, 826 from Alabang, 809 from Tunasan, 805 from Cupang, 765 from Poblacion, 586 from Sucat, 296 from Bayanan, and 123 from Buli. 1,421 recipients were unclassified.

There are 139,099 individuals who received their first booster shot, or 31.48 percent of the target population of 442,517.

Anyone based in Muntinlupa who needs to get vaccinated or boosted for COVID-19 should contact MunCoVac as soon as possible.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this recent development? Did you notice if members of your local community who got boosted previously are eager to get their 2nd booster shot? Did anyone from the anti-vaccine fanatics community harass you and bombard you with their creative propaganda?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673

COVID-19 Crisis: Muntinlupa City Health Officer claims there is no community transmission and clustering of COVID-19 cases

Even though the has been a slight increase in COVID-19 cases, the health office of the City Government of Muntinlupa declared that there is no clustering of cases and no community transmission locally, the Manila Bulletin reported.

To put things in perspective, posted below is the excerpt from the Manila Bulletin report. Some parts in boldface…

The head of Muntinlupa City’s health office said there is no community transmission and clustering of Covid-19 cases in the city despite a slight increase in cases.

“I want to report that we have no reported community transmission and we have no clustering of cases,” said Dr. Juancho Bunyi, head of the City Health Office (CHO), on Monday, May 30, during the flag-raising ceremony at the Muntinlupa City Hall.

As of May 29, Muntinlupa recorded 16 active Covid-19 cases out of 40,030 confirmed cases, 39,400 recoveries, and 614 deaths since 2020.

The CHO reported six new Covid-19 cases, five new recoveries, and zero deaths on May 29.

In the last seven days, Muntinlupa recorded 23 new Covid-19 cases, up from 18 new cases from May 16 to 22.

There were six new Covid-19 cases on May 29, five on May 28, zero on May 27, nine on May 26, zero on May 25, one on May 24, two on May 23.

Bunyi said despite that Muntinlupa is low risk when it comes to healthcare utilization rate, everyone should follow standards including wearing well-fitted masks.

“If you feel something, please isolate and undergo testing. Avoid closed spaces. Take care of ourselves,” he said.

The above report ended stating that people should get vaccinated or boosted whenever they are eligible to do so. Be aware that MunCoVac is organizing the local vaccination and booster shots rollout.

Let me end this piece by asking you readers: If you are a Muntinlupa City resident, what is your reaction to this recent development? Do you believe that Muntinlupa City will not experience a surge of new COVID-19 cases? Do you think that people in the city are constantly practicing safety protocols?

You may answer in the comments below. If you prefer to answer privately, you may do so by sending me a direct message online.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/

For more South Metro Manila community news and developments, come back here soon. Also say NO to fake news, NO to irresponsible journalism, NO to misinformation, NO to plagiarists, NO to reckless publishers and NO to sinister propaganda when it comes to news and developments. For South Metro Manila community developments, member engagements, commerce and other relevant updates, join the growing South Metro Manila Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/342183059992673