MANILA — Senator Christopher “Bong” Go on Sunday urged government authorities to consider imposing stricter measures on top of community quarantine protocols being implemented to control the rapidly rising number of COVID-19 cases in select areas as seen in the past days.
“Kailangang higpitan muna natin ulit ang mga patakaran. Maraming nagkukumpyansa masyado. Kailangan maitigil ang mabilis na pagtaas ng mga kaso ng COVID-19, lalo na sa NCR, upang hindi bumagsak ang ating health care system,” Go, chair of the Senate Committee on Health, suggested.
(We need to tighten again our health protocols. Many people are becoming overconfident. There’s a need to control the rapid rise of COVID-19, particularly in NCR, and prevent the collapse of our health care system.)
He, however, recommended that government authorities and health experts find a viable balance between protecting people’s lives from the threats of COVID-19 while ensuring that operations of essential public services and industries remain unhampered.
“Natuto na dapat tayo sa pinagdaanan natin noong nakaraang taon. Naranasan na natin — nag-ECQ na tayo noon, nakailang pagsasara na tayo ng negosyo, nakailang pagtigil na tayo ng trabaho. Kung babalik tayo sa mas mahigpit na patakaran, gawan natin ng paraang hindi masyado mahirap para sa ating mga kababayan,” Go said.
(We should have learned from what we experienced last year. We experienced everything — ECQ, closure of businesses, stopping work. If we go back to tighter protocols, we need to find ways that the public won’t have a difficult time.)
Go recommended that essential and even non-essential services and industries can remain operational to support the economy but must be subjected to strict adherence to safety protocols and minimum public health standards.
“Ang importante ngayon, mailigtas natin ang buhay ng mga Pilipino dahil malaki na ang tinaas ng kaso ng nagkakasakit. Kailangan mapigilan ito habang patuloy ang ating pagbabakuna,” he said.
(What’s important now is saving Filipinos’ lives because the cases are rising. We need to stop this while we are continuing vaccinations.)
Go also suggested that mass gatherings be temporarily prohibited while work-from-home arrangements must be encouraged. Families, particularly elders and vulnerable members, must take extra precautions by staying at home and avoiding unnecessary travels.
“Iwasan rin muna natin ang mga bisita sa bahay. Limitado lang dapat sa iilang katao ang ating nakakasalamuha para maproteksyunan ang ating pamilya at hindi magkahawahan,” Go further recommended.
(Let’s avoid visiting others. Limit your exposure to people in order to protect your families.)
While the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) is expected to recommend measures to control the reported surge in COVID-19 cases the past days, Go reiterated the need for the public to continue cooperating with authorities and strictly follow health protocols.
“Ako po’y nakikiusap sa mga kababayan natin. Huwag tayong magkumpiyansa. Follow health protocols, social distancing, mask, face shield, hugas ng kamay. Kung hindi naman kailangan, huwag munang lumabas ng inyong pamamahay, delikado pa po,” he reminded.
(I appeal to everyone not to be complacent. Follow health protocols, social distancing, mask, face shield, washing of hands. If it’s not necessary, don’t go outdoors.)
“(Bilang halimbawa,) kapag mayro’n po sa isandaang katao at mayro’n nang isa na hindi sumunod sa health protocols, posible na pong magkahawahan. Ang problema po ngayon, maraming nagkukumpiyansa na po dahil sa pagbukas ng ekonomiya,” he explained.
(For example, when there is 100 people and there is just one not following health protocols, the virus will spread. The problem here is that many people are becoming complacent because we opened the economy.)
“Huwag tayong maging kampante. Disiplina po ang kailangan dito ng bawat Pilipino. Sumunod tayo sa gobyerno habang nag-uumpisa tayo sa pagbabakuna. Napatunayan naman po na ‘pag nag-mask, face shield, social distancing, at hugas ng kamay — napatunayan na higit 90% po na hindi po magkahawahan,” he added.
(Let’s not be complacent. Each Filipino needs to be disciplined. Let’s follow the government as we are starting the vaccinations. It’s proven that wearing a face mask, face shield, social distancing, and washing of hands decrease infection by 90%.)
Go appealed to all Filipinos not to be complacent and remain vigilant as the threat of COVID-19, especially its new variants, continues to exist.
“Huwag tayong magkumpyansa masyado dahil nandiyan pa ang COVID-19 at delikado pa talaga ang panahon ngayon. Kaya tumaas ‘yung numero ngayon dahil marami pong nagkukumpiyansa at naglalabasan po,” he said.
(Don’t be complacent because COVID-19 is still here and it’s still dangerous. And the cases are rising because people are becoming complacent and going out.)
Go also urged Filipinos to continue supporting the government and put their trust in the vaccines as it is integral to eventually restoring normalcy in the country.
“Magtiwala po tayo sa gobyerno at suportahan natin ang national vaccine roadmap. Ito po ang susi tungo sa muling pagbangon at pagbalik sa normal na pamumuhay. Huwag tayo matakot sa bakuna, matakot tayo sa COVID-19 dahil ito ang nakamamatay at ang bakuna ang solusyon sa sakit na ito,” Go said.
(Trust in the government and support the national vaccine roadmap. This is the towards our return to normal lives. Let’s not be afraid of the vaccine, but be cautious of COVID-19 because this is deadly and the vaccine is the only solution.)
“For us to heal as one and recover as one, we must act as one!” he finally appealed.
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