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‘Gov’t may extend quarantine in Covid-19-affected areas’

In a statement Wednesday, Galvez said “the government may still have to extend the quarantine period in some affected areas.”

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By Prince Golez

The lockdown may be extended beyond 30 days in some areas to combat the coronavirus disease (Covid-19), said Presidential Peace Adviser and chief implementer of the National Action Plan against coronavirus Carlito Galvez Jr.

In a statement Wednesday, Galvez said “the government may still have to extend the quarantine period in some affected areas.”

He cited the need to strike a balance between ensuring the health and safety of residents while looking after the economy, social order and human safety.

“We would like to assure the Filipino people that the government is doing everything possible to prevent and mitigate the socio-economic impact of the disease. But this will require the full cooperation and support of all members of the community.”

Meanwhile, Galvez said the National Task Force on Covid-19 has adopted a “carrier-centric” approach that aims to detect, isolate and treat infected patients so they can be cured of the disease and return to their communities as soon as possible.

“An infected person becomes a threat to the general public when he or she is mobile and not isolated, and becomes a carrier of the disease,” according to him.

To detect potential carriers, the former chief-of-staff of the Armed Forces called for massive testing of persons under investigation (PUIs) and persons under monitoring (PUMs), effective contact tracing, enforcement of home quarantine, and isolation of confirmed patients and PUIs.

“Contact-tracing will be crucial in this effort, as it will enable us to quickly and effectively identify the potential carriers of the disease, and isolate them from the rest of the community before they can infect others. We can use the existing technology, transparency of government processes and vigilance of the community.

“Local government units should find innovative ways by combining the strategy of selective and total lockdown, massive testing, designation of appropriate ‘forced quarantine’ facilities for PUIs and PUMs, effective implementation of social distancing and home quarantine and protection and segregation of the seniors, vulnerable sector and urban poor,” he added.

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