NCR, Adjacent Provinces Back to MECQ until April 30
Malacañang announced on Sunday that NCR (National Capital Region), Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal are back under the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) from April 12 to 30.
A woman looks at essentials item in a booth outside Greenbelt Mall/IMAGE from the Philippine Primer
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said President Rodrigo Duterte made this decision after more hospitals said they will provide rooms and beds dedicated to COVID-19 patients.
“Because of the President’s directive to Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) to pay unpaid Covid-19 claims, more private, national government and local government unit hospitals have committed to provide additional Covid-19 beds, especially ICU beds in NCR Plus,” he said in an online press conference.
PhilHealth earlier approved the application of a debit-credit payment method (DCPM) to facilitate the settlement of accounts payable to health care facilities (HCFs) during the state of public health emergency due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Besides the said areas, Santiago City in Isabela, Quirino province, and Abra are also placed under MECQ.
Meanwhile, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Batangas, Tacloban City, Iligan City, Davao City, Lanao del Sur, and Quezon are under the general community quarantine (GCQ).
The rest of the country are under the least restrictive modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).
Common curfew still in place
Roque said the common curfew from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. remains in place until mayors and governors have agreed on modified hours. He said consultations are already ongoing and a decision may be made soon. However, essential workers, cargo vehicles, and public transportation will not be restricted by the said curfew.
A restaurant employee practicing social distancing while taking takeout orders/IMAGE from the Philippine Primer
According to amended omnibus guidelines of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID), strict home quarantine shall be observed in all households under MECQ. Movement of persons shall be limited to accessing essential goods and services, and for work in permitted offices or establishments or such activities allowed.
Persons below 18 and over 65, those with immunodeficiency, comorbidity, or other health issues, and pregnant women are required to remain at home at all times except for obtaining essential goods and services or for work.
Under the IATF-EID guidelines, the following establishments, persons, or activities are not be permitted to operate, work, or be undertaken during MECQ:
- Entertainment establishments such as karaoke bars, bars, clubs, concert halls, theaters, and cinemas;
- Recreational venues such as internet cafes, billiard halls, amusement arcades, bowling alleys, and such;
- Amusement parks or theme parks, kid amusement industries such as playgrounds, playroom, and kiddie rides;
- Outdoor sports courts or venues for contact sports, scrimmages, games, or activities;
- Indoor sports courts or venues, fitness studios, gyms, spas or other indoor leisure centers or facilities, and swimming pools;
- Casinos, horse racing, cockfighting and operation of cockpits, lottery and betting shops, and other gaming establishments except for the draws conducted by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office;
- Indoor visitor or tourist attractions, libraries, archives, museums, galleries, and cultural shows and exhibits;
- Outdoor tourist attractions;
- Venues for meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions;
- Personal care services which include beauty salons, beauty parlors, medical esthetic clinics, cosmetic or derma clinics, make-up salons, nail spas, reflexology, aesthetics, wellness, and holistic centers, and other similar establishments; acupuncture and electrocautery establishments, and massage therapy including sports therapy establishments. It also includes establishments providing tanning services, body piercings, tattooing, and similar services. Home service for these activities is likewise not permitted; and
- Indoor dine-in services of food preparation establishments such as restaurants and eateries.
Source: Philippine News Agency