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DOH Bicol: ‘Get vaxxed!’

By Keren Anne Bernadas

NAGA CITY---City officials ‘highly encouraged’ the public to wear facemasks in crowded and closed spaces following the reinstatement of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) of alert levels.

Naga City, along with the provinces of Albay, Camarines Sur, Sorsogon and Catanduanes was placed under Alert Level 1 status from April 15 until April 30.

City Events, Protocol and Public Information Officer Allen Reondanga reiterated that wearing of facemasks is mandatory among those working and going inside hospital, infirmary and medical facilities under Alert Level 1 but is “highly encouraged” in other indoor, outdoor and public places.

“The instruction of our local chief executive yesterday is to follow whatever are the guidelines of the national government in directing the local government units,” Reondanga said.

Acting City Health Officer Dr. Ronaldo Amoranto reminded the public to still follow COVID-19 protocols such as proper hand washing, sanitizing and wearing of facemasks since there is a reported increase of active cases in the city.

“Maging alerto, maglikay kita kan satuyang mga sadiri na dae kita mainfect kan virus na ini, even though garo man lang ini sipon man lang. Maglikay man giraray ta makakaapekto ini sa satuyang pang urualdaw na pagtrabaho lalo na su mga job order – itong mga no work no pay basis. Magmask po kita lalo na sa establisyemento na grabe an tawo, (Stay vigilant, let us avoid getting infected, though it seemed like a normal runny nose. Let us also keep watch on our health and avoid sickness to get in the way of our job, especially for those who are under the ‘no work, no pay’ policy. Let us wear mask, especially in crowded places),” Dr. Amoranto said.

As of Tuesday, 15 active cases have been documented in the city with Arcturus Covid strain or the XBB 1.16 omicron variant which appeared to be more contagious than other subvariants, the city health officer said.

Nevertheless, he said that these active cases are all under mild COVID conditions.

Meanwhile, the Department of Health Bicol once again encouraged the public to observe minimum public health standards and secure themselves by having booster shots.

Relatively, the overall accomplishment on COVID vaccination coverage in Naga City, from April 16 to 22, now reached 85.40 percent, with low community risk classification. The city has surpassed its target population of 210,404 since 2022.

Naga City Public Safety Officer Renne Gumba said that the mayor’s directive is to undertake all necessary precautions and response given the alert level that was imposed in the city. He added that preventive measures must continue in the community, particularly to individuals with co-morbidities and senior citizens who have weaker immunity. (With reports from Danilyn Borre, Ateneo De Naga University-PIA5/Camarines Sur)


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