Wed, 01 Dec 2021

ZAMBOANGA CITY - To prevent a further surge of Covid-19 cases, the local government ordered a return to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) for the rest of the month starting Saturday.

Executive Order (EO) 687-2021 said from general community quarantine since July 1, MECQ will be in effect October 16 to 31.

It marked the second time the city was placed under MECQ after May 8 to June 30 this year.

Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar issued the EO after the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) approved the request of the local IATF and the health sector.

Dr. Dulce Amor Miravite, city health officer, said 144 new infections on Friday raised the active cases tally to 2,776.

Of the total active cases, 2,246 infections, or 98.91 percent were acquired through community transmission while 51 percent are asymptomatic.

The rest of the active cases include 20 detainees, eight authorized persons outside residence, one person deprived of liberty, and one Bureau of Jail Management and Penology personnel.

"Our hospital bed utilization rate is now at 85.9 percent. That is a critical level and our isolation facilities are full," Miravite said in an interview.

The recovery rate is at 80.71 percent, or 14,975 out of the total 18,552 cases since last year.

From August 11 to October 8, a total of 60 essential workers tested positive during random rapid antigen tests at borders.

Two of the positive cases were found to be infected with the Delta variant.

The death toll stood at 801, also as of Friday, with three new fatalities.

122nd PNP fatality

Overall, the Zamboanga Peninsula has 1,651 coronavirus-related deaths as of October 11.

Included in the tally was a 48-year-old police officer who passed away on October 8 at the Zamboanga Peninsula Medical Center and was the 122nd fatality at thePhilippine National Police (PNP).

Records revealed the cop tested positive for Covid-19 on September 4 and had been under medical care since then to manage his other conditions.

He was on dialysis and had a history of stroke.

Overall, the number of PNP's active cases has declined since September 17 when it peaked at 3,200.

As of Saturday, there were only 941 infected PNP personnel while 40,138 have recovered out of the total 41,201 confirmed cases.

EO guidelines

"The public is strongly advised to comply with health and safety protocols and help curb the spread of Covid-19," Salazar said in a statement on Saturday.

Under EO 687-2021, establishments providing basic necessities and such activities related to foods and medicine production will remain open; movement of people shall be limited to accessing essential goods and services and for work permitted offices and establishments; the no reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, no entry policy for persons entering the city will continue to be implemented based on the authority of the local government unit; government instrumentalities and agencies shall be fully operational with skeleton workforce and the remainder under alternative work arrangement; and maritime, aviation, and transportation sectors shall be allowed to operate as such capacity and protocol in accordance with the guidelines issued by other laws.

The movement of land, air or sea of all types of goods and cargoes, including their personnel in delivery vehicles to and from their destination, shall remain unhampered; all public and private gatherings are temporarily suspended for the duration of this order unless otherwise lifted; religious gathering shall be allowed up to 10 percent of the venue capacity; curfew will be imposed in all places from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m., Monday to Sunday; and quarantine passes will be the basis of the movement of people within the city.

Also under the EO,inbound leisure travel shall be temporarily suspended until the expiration of the order or transition to a lower quarantine status, whichever comes first, and a liquor ban shall be implemented in all establishments and public places without exemptions.

All beaches, beach resorts, inland water resorts, establishments with pools, and other similar resort establishments shall remain closed for the duration of the MECQ. (With a report from Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)

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