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COVID-19 PANDEMIC

Marcos won't lift state of public health emergency yet


President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. will not yet lift the state of public health emergency declared on the whole country in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

At a PinasLakas vaccination event in Manila on Wednesday, Marcos told reporters that the state of public health emergency might stay until the end of this year.

"Yes, we were just discussing it with Usec. [Maria Rosario] Vergeire because maraming mga binibigay sa international medical community kapag state of emergency. WHO (World Health Organization) is one of them," Marcos said.

(Yes, we were just discussing it with Usec. Vergeire because the international medical community is giving a lot of help when there is state of emergency.)

"At kung itigil natin ‘yung state of emergency, matitigil ‘yun. But if we can change — we are looking at amending the law in terms of procurement and all of that in the middle of an emergency," he added.

(If we stop the state of emergency, the assistance will stop.)

"But that will take time. So malamang we will extend it until the end of the year," the President said. 

The state of public health emergency was declared in March 2020 at the onset of the pandemic by then-President Rodrigo Duterte.

Under Proclamation 922, the state of public health emergency shall remain in force and effect until lifted or withdrawn by the President.

COVID-19 cases

On Tuesday, the Department of Health recorded 2,633 new COVID-19 cases, increasing the country’s caseload to 3,838,062. So far, the country has 36,190 active COVID-19 infections.

The Philippines was classified by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as a Level 3 destination for a high level of COVID-19 in the country. The US CDC said Level 3 meant that a destination had more 100 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population over the past 28 days.

Vergeire, for her part, had said the Philippines used different metrics in classifying COVID-19 risks.

The Department of Health (DOH) on Tuesday recorded 2,633 new COVID-19 cases, increasing the country’s caseload to 3,838,062.

The Philippines' single-day new COVID-19 case tallies had hovered above 4,000 for the last several days before going down to 3,484 on Monday.

The National Capital Region (NCR) was the region with the most cases in the recent two weeks with 15,685, followed by Calabarzon with 9,972, Central Luzon with 5,267, Western Visayas with 2,763, and Cagayan Valley with 2,402. —KBK/RSJ, GMA News

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