On Tuesday, the Department of Health asked Malacañang to extend the state of calamity for COVID-19 beyond December 31.
During the press briefing, DOH officer-in-charge Maria Rosario Vergeire said that they have already submitted a memorandum to the Office of the President to extend the state of calamity declaration.
The extension request came after a bill creating the Philippine Center for Disease Prevention and Control was not enacted on time.
Vergeire said, “If the state of calamity would not be extended, we will be losing the different strategies that we are doing.”
These different strategies include immunization of COVID-19 vaccines, emergency hiring of healthcare workers, and validity of emergency use of COVID-19 drugs.
Last March 2020, former president Rodrigo Duterte signed Proclamation No. 922. This declared a state of public health emergency due to the outbreak.
A month after he took office, President Bongbong Marcos extended the state of calamity nationwide until the year ends.
Since the pandemic, the Philippines has recorded over 4 million infections and 65,000 deaths.