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IATF: NCR eased to Alert Level 2 starting Nov. 5, 2021

The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases has approved the de-escalation of the quarantine status in Metro Manila to Alert Level 2, presidential spokesman Harry Roque Jr. said on Thursday night.

In a statement sent on Thursday night, Roque said the National Capital Region would be under Alert Level 2 from November 5, 2021 until November 21, 2021.

The IATF also approved is the recommendation of the sub-Technical Working Group on Data Analytics to base the alert level assignments on data nearest to the implementation date. 

Starting December 1, 2021, alert level assignments shall be determined at every 15th and 30th of the month. 

"Escalations, on the other hand, may be done at any time in the middle of the implementation period as warranted while de-escalations can only be done at the end of the 2-week assessment period," Roque said.

The IATF directed the National Task Force Against COVID-19 (NTF), together with the Regional Task Forces and Regional IATFs, to provide weekly feedback on the progress and implementation on all areas identified for Alert Level System roll-out to the IATF.

The IATF amended the Guidelines on the Implementation of Alert Levels System for COVID-19 Response in Pilot Areas to clarify the allowed movement of persons under varying alert levels.

Meanwhile, to measure the success of the implementation of the NTF-approved Phase IV of the National Action Plan Against COVID-19 (NAP Phase IV), the following recovery indices shall be used: 

  • for Infection Management, the indices are the number of severe and critical cases per month, time gap from detection to isolation, and tests per case;
  • for Vaccine Roll-out, the indices are the total vaccines administered per capita, new vaccine doses administered per capita, and fully vaccinated individuals; and
  • for Socio-Economic Recovery, the indices are the Purchasing Managers’ Index by IHS Markit, google mobility to retail and recreation, and number of commercial airline passengers.

What's allowed, banned

Under the IATF guidelines dated October 13, 2021, the government allowed and banned these activities for areas under the less strict Alert Level System 2:

Intrazonal and interzonal travel is allowed subject to reasonable restrictions based on age and comorbidities, as may be determined by LGUs which should not be stricter as prescribed in Alert Level 4.

Also, minors and those belonging to vulnerable population must be allowed to access essential goods and services.

Individual outdoor exercises are allowed for all ages regardless of comorbidities or vaccination status.

The following establishments/activities are allowed to operate at maximum of 50% indoor venue capacity for fully vaccinated individuals and minors even if unvaccinated, and 70% outdoor venue capacity.

  • Venues for meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE);
  • Permitted venues for social events such as parties, wedding receptions, engagement parties, wedding anniversaries, debut and birthday parties, family reunions, and bridal or baby showers;
  • Visitor or tourist attractions such as libraries, archives, museums, galleries, exhibits, parks, plazas, public gardens, scenic viewpoints or overlooks, and the like;
  • Amusement parks or theme parks;
  • Recreational venues such as internet cafes, billiard halls, amusement arcades, bowling alleys, skating rinks, archery halls, swimming pools, and similar venues;
  • Cinemas and movie houses;
  • Limited face-to-face or in-person classes for basic education subject to prior approval of the Office of the President;
  • Limited face-to-face or in-person classes for higher education and for technical-vocational education and training;
  • In-person religious gatherings; gatherings for necrological services, wakes, inurnment, and funerals for those who died of causes other than COVID-19 and for the cremains of the COVID-19 deceased;
  • Licensure or entrance/qualifying examinations administered by their respective government agency, and specialty examinations authorized by the IATF subject to the health and safety guidelines as approved by the IATF;
  • Dine-in services of food preparation establishments such as kiosks, commissaries, restaurants, and eateries, subject to DTI sector-specific protocols;
  • Personal care establishments such as barbershops, hair spas, hair salons, and nail spas, and those offering aesthetic/cosmetic services or procedures, make-up services, salons, spas, reflexology, and other similar procedures including home service options, subject to the sector-specific protocols of the DTI
  • Fitness studios, gyms, and venues for individual non-contact exercise and sports, subject to DTI sector-specific protocols. Provided that patrons/clients and workers/employees wear face masks at all times and that no group activities are conducted;
  • Film, music, and television production subject to the joint guidelines as may be issued by the DTI, DOLE, and the DOH;
  • Contact sports approved by the LGU where such games shall be held
  • Funfairs/peryas or kid amusement industries such as playgrounds, playroom, and kiddie rides;
  • Venues with live voice or wind-instrument performers and audiences such as in karaoke bars, clubs, concert halls, and theaters; and
  • Gatherings in residences with individuals not belonging to the same household.

Meanwhile, government offices can operate at 50% on-site capacity while applying work-from-home and other flexible work arrangements. -NB, GMA News