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Flattening the Curve vs Recession: Data holds key for policy makers, Ping stresses

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As policy makers rack their brains to strike a balance between flattening the COVID-19 curve and dealing with a looming economic recession, data will be a key factor in their work, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Friday.

Lacson said the right data will also help authorities in ensuring aid for poor families affected by the COVID-19 lockdowns will reach the intended beneficiaries.

“It is a most difficult decision to strike a balance between flattening the curve of COVID-19 and the looming economic recession due to a wide swath of business inactivity,” Lacson noted in a statement.

“Just as intelligence information can spell the difference between success and failure in my previous life in intelligence and law enforcement work, data is the key for our policy makers to make the right decisions at this critical time,” he added.

Lacson noted it is better left to “those who have almost unlimited access to all the relevant data” to decide which is the best course of action to take moving forward.

“Having said that, I am sure that if Congress is provided with all those data, we can help in the policy direction,” he added.

On the other hand, Lacson noted there is no perfect system of distribution of aid considering the number of families involved in the cash dole-out.

This is further complicated by a less efficient database due to the late implementation of the National ID system, he said.

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