The Quezon City government will still implement localized lockdowns even with Metro Manila moving from the general community quarantine (GCQ) to the stricter modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), which bans mass transport and non-essential work.
Quezon City government Joy Belmonte said that these small-scale lockdowns, dubbed by the city government "special concern" lockdowns, have been effective in preventing COVID-19 transmission.
“Tuloy pa rin po iyong special concern lockdown [implementation]. Noong May, may 37 areas po tayo under special concern lockdown. Ngayon po, 11 na lang. Maliliit na lugar lang po ito…maliit na barangay, maliit na kalsada, iskinita, purok,” Belmonte said in a Palace briefing.
“Ginagawa po ito para po makita natin kung may community transmission, kung may pagkukulang ba sa pag-comply sa minimum health standards, para hindi na po sila makahawa ng iba,” Belmonte added.
Belmonte said that once an area is placed under special concern lockdown, residents are all given free RT-PCR tests so that the authorities can immediate place those who test positive for COVID-19 in an isolation facility for mild and asymptomatic cases or admit them to hospitals if they are moderate, severe or critical cases.
Per Belmonte, Quezon City has three isolation facilities with a total of 500 beds.
“Fourteen days po ang lockdown kasi iyon po ang incubation period ng virus. Kung marami pa rin pong positive, puede po i-extend ng seven to 14 days ang lockdown,” Belmonte said.
“Karamihan naman po ng napapasailalim sa lockdown ay gumagaling sa loob ng 14 days, kaya I would say this step has been very successful,” she added.
Likewise, Belmonte said that the local government will give a cash grant for its residents during the MECQ period, which will last until August 18.
“I assure po na meron pong social amelioration program ang Quezon City government, napagdesisyunan lang po muna na unahin ang distribution noon second tranche ng SAP galing sa DSWD [Department of Social Welfare and Development],” Belmonte said.
“Iniisip lang po namin kung paano ipapamahagi itong P4,000 sa QC SAP kasi hindi po puede magpatawag ng mga tao for mass gathering,” she added.
Quezon City is inhabited by around three million people. — BM, GMA News