Metro Manila remains under GCQ

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Metro Manila will remain under a general community quarantine until Aug. 15. Photo by Michael Varcas, The Philippine Star

Metro Manila will continue to be under a general community quarantine (GCQ) until mid-August, despite the steady rise in coronavirus infections in the country.

“My plea is to endure some more. Many have been infected,” President Rodrigo R. Duterte said in a taped address aired on Friday.

Other areas that will continue to be under GCQ are: Bulacan, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, Lapu-Lapu City, Mandaue City, Talisay City, Minglanilla, Consolacion, and Zamboanga City.

Cebu City, which experienced a strict lockdown due to the surge in coronavirus cases, will be placed under a more relaxed GCQ starting Aug. 1.

The rest of the Philippines will be under a modified GCQ.

“For NCR and Region IV-A to maintain their GCQ classification, the National Task Force, the Department of Interior and Local Government, the Coordinated Operations to Defeat Epidemic Teams will implement in areas with high community transmission a strictly localized lockdown/ ECQ in barangays where 80% of cases are located and the publication of these barangays,” the Palace said in a statement.

The Philippines this month has recorded Southeast Asia’s biggest daily jump in coronavirus deaths and biggest single-day increase in confirmed infections.

On Thursday, the Health department reported 3,954 new infections, bringing the total to 89,374. Some of the biggest public and private hospitals are reporting full capacity and can no longer accommodate new coronavirus patients.

Malacañang also directed government hospitals in the Philippine capital and Region 1V-A to increase the number of hospital beds dedicated to COVID-19 up to 30-50%. It also asked private hospitals to raise the number of hospital beds dedicated to COVID-19 up to 20-30%. — Gillian M. Cortez with Reuters