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IATF OKs aesthetic services, cosmetic dentistry, gyms, internet cafes starting August 1

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has approved the partial reopening of aesthetic services, clinics offering cosmetic dentistry, gyms and internet cafés starting August 1, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said on Wednesday.

These businesses will be allowed to operate at 30% capacity at first, then at 50% after a few weeks, Lopez said in an interview on Dobol B sa News TV.

"Kahapon na-approve ng IATF 'yung in-endorse natin," he said.

Among the aesthetic services to be allowed are foot spa, facials, waxing and spot massage.

Blind massage is also allowed but not full body massage as this would entail a longer time at a spa or salon.

Cosmetic services such as placing dental veneers will be allowed as long as health protocols are followed such as wearing of personal protective equipment including gloves.

"Lahat 'yon, 'yung mga naiwan sa Category 4. Marami hong nagre-request talaga at hanapbuhay ito ng maraming tao," the Trade secretary said.

As for gyms, face masks are still required to be worn, Lopez said, except if there is only one person alone exercising. 

Group exercises such as Zumba are not yet allowed. 

Gyms should also ensure equipment are spaced out one meter apart.

Internet cafés would also be allowed for online learning but gaming is not permitted.

Maximum time at internet cafe may only be for two hours.

Review centers would also be allowed to operate starting August 1 but class size should only be 10.

Establishments offering pet grooming, drive-in cinemas and testing and tutorial centers would also be allowed to operate at 30% capacity, according to presidential spokesperson Harry Roque.

Roque added the IATF approved business activities under Category IV, which are allowed only in areas under modified general community quarantine.

These include full body massage; tattoo and body piercing; live events; entertainment industries; libraries, archives, museums and cultural centers; tourist destinations; language, driving, dance/acting/voice schools.

Cockfighting and the operation of cockpits, beerhouses and similar establishments primarily serving alcoholic drinks, and kid amusement industries remain prohibited in any form of community quarantine.

Lopez said the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) would issue a circular outlining the business operations allowed to resume partially on August 1.

He earlier said the DTI recommended to the IATF that certain Category 4 sectors be moved “to Category 3 so they can reopen under GCQ... with 30% operating capacity, unless specified otherwise.”

Category 4 businesses have not been allowed to operate since mid-March when quarantine measures were first put in place to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. — with Virgil Lopez/KG/RSJ, GMA News