MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang declared Sunday that starting February 1 to 15, NCR and 7 other provinces will be placed under Alert Level 2. Along with this, the “No Vax, No Ride” policy shall be lifted.
Since late December, a sudden surge of Covid-19 cases has been observed in the metro due to the highly contagious omicron variant, pushing the national government to place NCR and other areas under Alert Level 3 from January 3 to 31 to control the situation.
By this time, Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said Covid-19 cases in the NCR have declined, matched with the widened vaccination coverage.
Below is the complete list of areas under Alert Level 2 from Feb 1-15:
- Metro Manila
- Southern Leyte
According to Duque, the alert level system depends on an area’s two-week growth rate, average daily attack rate, and healthcare utilization rate.
According to the OCTA Research Group, the capital region along with Cavite and Rizal are back to the “moderate risk” classification for COVID-19.
Below is OCTA Research Fellow Dr. Guido David’s tweet showing the data presentation of how the Covid-19 cases have progressed throughout the month of January 2022:
Along with the less stringent Alert Level 2 placement of NCR and the said provinces, the use of public transportations in these areas will also be eased for the unvaccinated.
Transportation Assistant Secretary Goddes Hope Libiran said, “Once we de-escalate to Alert Level 2, the no vaxx, no ride policy shall automatically be lifted.”
Under Alert Level 2, establishments may operate at a maximum of 50 percent for their indoor venue capacity and 70 percent for the outdoor capacity for fully vaccinated individuals.
However, the following are still NOT allowed to operate despite the more lenient alert leve 2: casinos, horse racing, cockfighting and operation of cockpits, lottery and betting shops, and other gaming establishments (except as may be authorized by the IATF or the Office of the President).
University of the Philippines (UP) Pandemic Response Team’s Jomar Rabajante said the number of daily new COVID-19 infections in the country may return to pre-surge levels by late February or March.
Authorities continue to remind the public to follow the standard health protocols and to get themselves vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible.
Sources: Philippine News Agency, ABS-CBN News