Pampanga to shift to GCQ on June 1 upon Duterte approval

IF APPROVED by President Rodrigo Duterte, Pampanga will formally transition Monday, June 1, into the general community quarantine (GCQ) until June 15 after the national Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) issued Resolution No. 40 ordering the shift in protocols on Wednesday, June 27.

IATF Resolution 40 has yet to be approved by the President, who is expected to announce his decision Thursday evening, according to Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque.

Roque, in his regular virtual press briefing, refused to confirm the resolution by the IATF that downgraded risk-level and quarantine classifications of various local government units (LGUs) for the June 1 to 15 period.

“Let me be clear. Whatever the President will announce later this [Thursday] evening, we could still revert to ECQ or enhanced community quarantine if the data would show a fast doubling rate,” Roque said.

Doubling time refers to the period within which the number of cases doubles.

Confirmed cases of coronavirus infections in a 24-hour period plateaued in May as daily incidence averaged 220 to 240.

But cases jumped to 350 and 380 in the last two days, the highest for the month of May.

Other factors that are considered in determining quarantine restrictions is the health system capacity, or the capacity of an LGU to provide critical care, and economic impact.

An unverified copy of the IATF Resolution 40, which the task force passed Wednesday, May 27, approved a shift to GCQ on June 1 for Metro Manila and other areas currently under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).

Metro Manila and the seven other areas under MECQ until May 31 would transition to the less stringent GCQ. These are Bataan, Bulacan, Laguna, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Angeles City and Zambales.

Twenty-five other provinces and cities classified as having moderate risk of infection will remain under GCQ.

The rest of the country is classified as low-risk and would further relax restrictions under a modified GCQ.

Localized ECQ may still be implemented in areas with a high number of coronavirus infections, the task force resolution stated.

As of Thursday morning, Malacañang has not confirmed the IATF resolution, a copy of which is posted on an information portal that was created in cooperation with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and supported by The Asia Foundation and the Australian government. (With MVI/SunStar Philippines)


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