MECQ extended in NCR Plus

By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos

April 28, 2021, 10:09 pm

<p>File photo</p>

File photo

MANILA – National Capital Region (NCR) Plus will remain under the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) next month, President Rodrigo Duterte announced on Wednesday.

“Modified enhanced community quarantine. Modified ito so medyo strict. NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, Rizal (Modified enhanced community quarantine – modified, meaning somehow strict – will be imposed in NCR, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal),” Duterte said in his talk to the people.

MECQ will be implemented in NCR Plus, composed of Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, MECQ until May 14, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a separate press statement.

Qurino and Abra provinces, as well as the City of Santiago in Isabela, will also stay under MECQ for the whole month of May, Duterte said.

On the other hand, the more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) will be imposed in Apayao, Baguio City, Benguet, Ifugao, Kalinga, Mountain Province, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Batangas, Quezon, Tacloban City, Iligan City, Davao City, and Lanao del Sur from May 1 to 31.

The rest of the country will remain under the least restrictive modified GCQ (MGCQ).

Roque said the latest quarantine status is still “subject to the appeals of local government units.”

The government is targeting to lower health care and intensive care unit (ICU) utilization rates to ease the quarantine protocols in the country amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

Daily attack rate, two-week average attack rate, and health care utilization rate serve as indicators for community quarantine classification.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on April 22 said augmenting ICU beds is crucial in relaxing the quarantine status in the country.

On Tuesday, Roque said Health Secretary Francisco Duque III is currently in talks with an Austrian firm for the purchase of additional 200 ICU beds. (PNA)